Amazon building Alberta's first robotics fulfillment centre in Edmonton area

Article content

Alberta’s first Amazon robotics warehouse will be opening in the Edmonton area, creating more than a thousand full and part-time jobs.

The American tech giant announced on Monday that it would be constructing a massive 600,000 square-foot fulfillment centre in Parkland County. The automated warehouse, slated to open in 2022, will be used to pick, pack and ship small items to customers such as books, electronics and toys. This will be the second fulfillment centre in Alberta, with the first being in the Calgary area.

Vibhore Arora, the regional operations director for Amazon, said there will be a wide range of job opportunities at the centre including operators, technicians and safety leaders.

“Typically, the misnomer is if it is a robotics centre, you have to be a technical person with a technical background to be able to get a job there,” he said. “That is not the case. We focus heavily on training so anybody who is willing to get trained can actually get one of these operations jobs.”


Story continues below

Article content

Arora said the construction of the company’s warehouse in Leduc in 2020 created 700 construction jobs and anticipates the new Parkland facility will do the same.

Amazon started using robotics at its warehouses in 2012. The company employs more than 3,600 people in the Prairies and has invested more than $600 million in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.

Article content

Arora said having the fulfillment centre in Parkland County means customers in the Edmonton area will likely see delivery speeds improved.

“If you are a customer in Alberta and you are ordering something, which is in … one of the two fulfillment centres in Alberta, it will get to you quicker versus if you order an item that’s in Toronto or maybe it’s an (out of stock) situation in Alberta,” he said. “This is the latest generation of our robotics technology at this new fulfillment centre. We will have millions of products in that building.”


Story continues below

Article content

Amazon also announced it would be donating more than 200 robot kits to community groups in the Parkland Count area to encourage continued learning in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

Premier Jason Kenney said in a news release that the centre shows a vote of confidence in the province’s economy, highlighting it will create thousands of jobs.

“This is exciting news for Alberta,” he said. “As we continue to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, high-tech investments like this will continue to get people back to work as we diversify and look towards the future. Thank you to Amazon as well for the generosity you’ve shown to community groups in Parkland County with the donation of 200 robotics kits to support STEM learning.”

Enoch Cree Nation 135 Chief William Morin said in the release that he was excited a top-five global business leader was setting up so close to the community.

“This means our young people have a real example of the future global economy they can be a part of,” he said.

Employees at the Parkland County facility will have access to Amazon’s continuing education opportunities through upskilling programs like Career Choice, where the company prepays up to 95 per cent of tuition for sources related to in-demand fields.



Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

Latest articles

Related articles