REGIONAL — Amazon has purchased a huge land parcel on the edge of East Pleasanton to build a warehouse that would serve the East Bay region, company officials said.
An Amazon spokeswoman on Friday confirmed the $75 million purchase from Lionstone Investment Group for 58.5 acres on Stanley Boulevard near Valley Drive.
Construction likely will not begin until 2023.
“Plans are still up in the air for the site,” said Natalie Wolfrom, a Northern California public relations manager. “It may be a sortation room, or it may be a delivery station. Plans have not been made yet.”
Wolfrom said the facility will create up to 800 jobs if it becomes a sortation center. A delivery station would employ 100 to 200 people.
At sortation centers, which could be up to 520,000 square feet, associates sort customer orders by their final destinations and consolidate them onto trucks for delivery. Smaller delivery stations, about 201,000-square-feet, are locations where customer orders are prepared for last-mile delivery.
The land bordering the Chain of Lakes and gravel quarries — not far from the Pleasanton Garbage Service transfer station on Busch Road — is zoned for industrial use. Pleasanton Mayor Karla Brown said the site is on the “very, very edge” of the city and not an area for residential use.
“It is a good fit,” Brown said. “It’s on the outside fringe of our community. If you are going to have a warehouse, it’s the best location for Pleasanton.”
The Alameda County Recorder website showed Amazon filed a deed for the property on Sept. 16. Brown said the SteelWave real estate management firm helped facilitate the deal.
The area is part of the 2012 East Pleasanton Specific Plan, about 1,000 acres of gravel pits and lakes. According to the city’s plan, Lionstone Group owned 304 acres of reclaimed flat land.
Brown said she met with Amazon and SteelWave representatives about 40 days ago. Amazon’s website shows it has 28 “fulfillment centers” in California but none in the Bay Area. The closest appear to be in Tracy, Stockton, Manteca, Patterson and Sacramento.
“They are looking for that last mile — that last distance to have warehousing near customers,” Brown said. “They said they are interested in buying land in Pleasanton.”
Pleasanton would require Amazon to go through the city’s normal processes, submitting its proposals to the city’s planning commission for public hearings and approval, Brown said.
Ellen Clark, Pleasanton’s community development director, stated that the city was aware of Amazon’s interest in the property as a potential distribution site, but “no details have been made available on the exact size or nature of the proposed facility, and no formal application has been submitted by Amazon for development of the property.”
“Upon receipt of an application, the city will evaluate that proposal relative to the current general plan and zoning designations for the site, including completion of any necessary environmental review under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA),” Clark said.
Although some residents expressed worries on social media about increased traffic and other infrastructure needs where taxpayers might have to foot the bill, there did not appear to be any immediate groundswell of opposition to the project.
Regarding traffic, Brown said trucks could use Isabel Avenue to the 680 and 580 freeways. Amazon is working to use electronic vehicles for final delivery, she said.
Sandy Figuers a Zone 7 Water Agency board member since 1988, said he had “never heard any staff or board member express any interest in that huge chunk of land.”
In recent years, the shopping giant has expanded its holdings in the East Bay. In April 2020, the company acquired a 201,620-square-foot building at 5160 Hacienda Drive in Dublin to be used for Amazon Web Services.
Amazon also leased a 612,000-square-foot building on 34 acres at 400 Longfellow Court in Livermore for a delivery station.
Last year, Amazon announced it planned to hire 100,000 employees in the United States and Canada and open hundreds of new buildings.