Caliornia Construction News staff writer
The City of Ontario’s economic development team took a field trip recently, to tour the largest Amazon warehouse in the world. The 4.1 million square foot, five-story and 97-foot-tall facility is currently under construction in the city’s Inland Empire.
When completed, the facility will be twice as large as Downtown L.A.’s tallest skyscraper and bigger than Disney’s California Adventure Park. It is being built as part of the Merrill Commerce Center located just north of Chino Airport, between Carpenter, Eucalyptus and Merrill Avenues.
Construction started soon after Amazon signed a lease for the building last summer ad work is expected to be completed by the end of the year. In a press release last August, Amazon said a new fulfillment center in Ontario would employ 1,500 people who will work alongside its robots as they pick, pack and ship smaller-sized items to customers.
The city has identified $1.2 billion in unfunded infrastructure and neighborhood improvement projects that are expected to become more expensive to address due to rising construction costs.
Many of the projects will support critical components of services including public safety, emergency response, local drinking water supplies, traffic congestion, affordable housing and homeless services, entice investment and business growth, and much more.
Here are some of the projects that council has prioritized to complete over the next 10 years:
Local Drinking Water & Flood Control
- $242 million in improvements to water and sewer systems. This includes $100 million in enhancements to storm drain infrastructure, and a $100 million Advanced Water Purification Facility to reclaim more than 2.9 billion gallons of wastewater per year and to help Ontario withstand drought conditions.
Parks, Recreation, & Community Beautification
- $59 million to construct new park attractions and improvements to playgrounds, skate parks, picnic areas, snack bars, and citywide soccer and ballfields.
Public Safety & 911 Emergency Response
- $41 million in public safety enhancements including a state-of-the-art real time crime center and two new police annex buildings supporting 25 additional police officers.
City-Wide Fiber Internet Services
- $118 million to provide low-cost high-speed fiber optic services to residential, commercial and public spaces, establish free community WiFi access, and enhance police and fire coordination and emergency response.
Homelessness & Mental Health
- $15 million to support individuals and families experiencing homelessness and mental health illness with additional shelters, transitional housing, and permanent supportive housing.