Amazon’s massive robotic fulfilment centre in Western Sydney is almost complete

As we head into the busiest time of the year with Christmas, Amazon is about to complete construction of the first Amazon Robotics fulfilment centre in the Southern Hemisphere,...

As we head into the busiest time of the year with Christmas, Amazon is about to complete construction of the first Amazon Robotics fulfilment centre in the Southern Hemisphere, This is also the largest warehouse ever built in Australia. The building’s shell is complete and the site is in the final stages of internal fit-out, external works and commissioning of building services. 

This robotics facility at Kemps Creek will be Amazon’s second FC in Western Sydney, and sixth in Australia, increasing the company’s capacity to fulfil customer orders around the country when it opens early next year.

The fulfilment centre, located at Goodman and Brickworks’ Oakdale West Industrial Estate in Kemps Creek, spans 200,000 square metres across four levels, which is around the land size of Taronga Zoo or 24 rugby league fields.

More than 4,000 people have worked on the construction and fit out of the site which included installation of around 14 kilometres of advanced conveyancing equipment and 2.5 kilometres of Amazon Robotics safety fencing. 

Approximately 37,000 yellow storage pods have been built to house up to 20 million of the smaller items sold on Amazon.com.au including jewelry, books, electronics, pantry items and toys, and hundreds of robotics drives have been commissioned, ready to assist employees fulfil customer orders. 

Robots work collaboratively with employees by moving the pods of inventory to them, reducing the time and effort that would otherwise be required for the employee to stow items for sale or pick them for new customer orders. They also save space, allowing for 50 per cent more items to be stowed per square metre which in turn allows for increased product selection.

“The opening of this site will double our operational footprint in Australia while creating more than 1,500 local jobs in Western Sydney, with the opportunity to work alongside advanced robotics to deliver the ultimate in service for customers. The introduction of robotics enables us to exponentially increase our capacity for storing inventory, providing additional opportunities for the thousands of small and medium sized Australian businesses we support, while increasing product selection and improving delivery speed for our customers around the country.

“We’re pleased to offer quality employment opportunities for people in Western Sydney in a safe and positive work environment, at a time when they are needed most. Along with specialised positions in areas like robotics, we have a range of roles that don’t require formal qualifications and provide an opportunity to work alongside advanced technology and build a career at Amazon. We’re excited to welcome people from all backgrounds and experiences to our team in the new year,”

Craig Fuller, Director of Operations, Amazon Australia.

When it opens, the Amazon Robotics FC will offer a diverse range of job opportunities with competitive pay in a high-tech, industry-leading workplace ranging from IT, HR and robotics professionals, to associates who will work collaboratively with robotics, to pick, pack and ship items to customers. Hiring has already started for the site, including the promotion and transfer of around 130 existing employees from Amazon’s first Sydney fulfilment centre in Moorebank. The majority of jobs at the Amazon Robotics site will be available next year and can be found at amazon.com/australiajobs

Goodman has collaborated with TNSW to provide greater public transport connectivity to the estate including a regular bus service – now operational – from St Mary’s train station, and invested $150 million in improvements to local infrastructure around Oakdale West, home of the Amazon Robotics site.

“Since commencement of Amazon’s site, more than 4,000 construction workers have been inducted to build and develop one of the most technologically advanced fulfilment centres in Australia. Our developments continue to increase in scale, providing essential infrastructure for the digital economy – from roads and transport, to local employment and innovative technology for supply chain efficiency.”

Jason Little, CEO Australia at Goodman

Amazon worked with Goodman Group and its JV partner Brickworks to secure the site and Goodman is managing development of the facility. 

Amazon.com.au launched in Australia in December 2017 and now offers customers 125 million products across 31 different categories including Amazon devices.

Amazon Robotics will complement Amazon’s existing network of six Australian fulfilment centres launched in Dandenong South, Melbourne in December 2017, followed by Moorebank, Sydney in August 2018, Perth’s Airport Precinct in November 2019, Lytton, Brisbane in October 2020 and most recently a second site in Ravenhall, Melbourne FC in August 2021.

Fast facts about the Amazon Robotics fulfilment centre:

  • This is the largest warehouse ever built in Australia. 
  • This will be the first Amazon Robotics site in the Southern Hemisphere.
  • Total floor area of the building is around 200,000 square metres – around the same land size as Taronga Zoo, double the land size of Bondi Beach and the size of 24 rugby league fields. 
  • It will have capacity to house up to 20 million items.
  • Around 14 kilometres of advanced conveyancing equipment has been installed to move inventory and packages around the building.
  • Approximately 2.5 kilometres of Amazon Robotics safety fencing has been used to create the robotics fields. 
  • Due to begin operating in early 2022, the site will create more than 1,500 jobs.
  • Around 130 employees from Amazon’s first Sydney fulfilment centre in Moorebank have been promoted and will transfer to the new Amazon Robotics FC.
  • More than 4,000 workers will have been involved in the construction and fit out of the building.
  • The site is within 12 hours drive of more than half the Australian population supporting fast delivery to customers.
  • The building comprises of 13,500 tonne of Australian steel, 3,000 tonnes more steel than was used for Sydney Olympic Park Stadium. 
  • More than 200,000 nuts and bolts were used for installation of the structural steel frame.
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Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021
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