Exclusive look inside Amazon's southwest Fresno fulfillment center, company announces large donation to Fresno Unified

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A constant whir fills the Amazon Robotics Fulfillment Center in Fresno, as orders are packed and shipped out to customers.

"(The center) is a symphony of technology and human know-how," said spokesperson Shevaun Brown. "So while robotics makes the job more efficient, we're able to use our cloud networks to make sure the right piece of inventory is delivered to the correct customer every single time."

For the first time, Amazon showed Action News the inner workings of its Fresno facility.

The technology tracks every item and every package.

Brown says more than one million products are stored inside the four floors, from pet food to toys and more.

Robots move them from station to station, anything that is smaller than a microwave can be sent out from Fresno.

Just one year ago, Amazon opened its first fulfillment center in the Valley.

"Since we've opened up this fulfillment center, we're able to service our Fresno area and Central Valley customers with faster shipping speeds, giving them more variety of product right here in Fresno," Brown said.

The 855,000 square foot building is massive, roughly the size of 14 football fields. There are 16 miles of conveyor belts to get packages from shelves to your home.

Amazon also has hired more people than the company first projected.

"Now that we've met customer demand, we're seeing more people want to shop at Amazon, so we were able to grow to 2,500 associates," Brown said.

Wednesday, Amazon held its grand opening to local leaders to see the fully operational facility.

They also had a surprise donation.

"On behalf of Amazon business we will be donating $10,000 to the Fresno Unified School District and this funding is going directly to creating seven robotics clubs at the high school," Brown said. "This is building upon the robotics teams they have in high school, so they can continue to develop their STEM skills."

Amazon hopes this effort will help young people pursue careers in this technology -- no matter where they live.

With one year under their belt, Amazon says they have provided even more jobs. Employees have helped ship hundreds of thousands of packages, not only to the West Coast but around the country every day.
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