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Amazon plan for Schodack fulfillment center moving forward

Feb 19, 2019 12:15 pm
Larry Rulison is reporting for the Times Union despite its decision to back out of a deal with New York to build its new headquarters in Long Island City, Amazon is showing no sign of abandoning its plan to build a $100 million fulfillment center in Schodack, Rensselaer County. The online retail giant intends to build a one-million-square-foot distribution center near Route 9. The fulfillment center is being built by developer Scannell Properties. Scannell would own the land and lease the building to Amazon, and it is Scannell that is seeking $13.7 million in state and local tax relief for the project from the Rensselaer County Industrial Development Agency. The facility would employ 800 people, and Amazon would equip the facility with sorting equipment and robotics. The Birchwood Association, a group of 50 Schodack homeowners who live near to the Route 9 site, is fighting for the town to do an in-depth environmental study of the project, which was approved by the town planning board in July. Rensselaer County state Supreme Court Justice Patrick McGrath last month dismissed the association's lawsuit seeking to reverse the planning board's vote until a lengthy environmental impact statement could be completed. The association believes the planning board did not adequately study the potential impacts the project could pose to drinking water, traffic and public safety. Bob Pasinella, the Rensselaer County IDA's executive director, said Scannell remains committed to the site. It is unclear if Empire State Development, the state agency that negotiated with Amazon on the Long Island City deal, is prepared to offer additional state incentives to build the Schodack facility. Rachael Lighty, an Amazon spokeswoman, said the company would not comment on speculation when asked if Amazon will move forward with projects in Schodack and elsewhere in New York."The company is constantly investigating new locations to support the growth and increase the flexibility of its North American network to address customers' needs," Lighty said.  "However, Amazon is not yet commenting on any specific plans in New York." Read the full story in the Times Union.