Amazon Building Rises in Charlton
by Janet Stoica
Don’t look now but the behemoth construction project going on in Charlton is progressing quickly. According to Charlton Town Administrator, Andrew Golas, the scheduled opening of the new Amazon Robotic Sortation Center located at 53 Sturbridge Road (Route 20 eastbound) will be late 2023 or early 2024. Driving along a quiet country road running parallel to the project brings a driver to a dead stop to stare at the four huge cranes and hectic activity surrounding the new building that can easily be seen from any satellite circling the earth.
The site surely must be the most expansive construction project in New England. Sitting on nearly 100 acres of former woodlands, the 2.8 million square foot building is expected to bring 1,000 jobs to the local area along with a bus stop scheduled by the Worcester Regional Transit Authority. The business that will be brought to Charlton’s coffee shops, fast food emporiums, gas stations, pharmacies, and similar retailers will be one for the books, ledger books that is.
“The town negotiated a 10-year Tax Increment Financing plan,” said Town Administrator Andrew Golas, “along with an allocation of $650,000 for the purchase of a new fire and rescue truck suitable for technical rescue operations as well as $100,000 funding for fire operations. Since Amazon’s building will be used as a first-line facility accepting manufacturer products, trailer trucks will be the main vehicles to this location with most arriving from and returning to Interstate 84.”
According to the town’s website information the 100-foot high warehouse will have 49 loading docks, 265 trailer parking stalls, and 1,250 car parking stalls on three surface lots. Projected net real estate taxes for the property will be $18,995,250 over the 10-year term of the TIF not including personal property taxes. The town is also expected to receive a host of additional funding that includes Routes 20 and 169 highway reconstruction, sidewalk replacement and improvements on Main Street and Masonic Home Road areas, STEM funding for Charlton schools, as well as recreation and arts investments.
Charlton voters at their recent special town meeting also just granted feasibility studies for a fire station sub-station as well as one for a community center/senior center.
Contact Janet: [email protected]