Amazon is expected to break ground in May on its $1.5 billion air hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport. A number of road upgrades are planned to accommodate the additional traffic. Contributed

Amazon plans move forward to bring thousands of jobs to region

Amazon is making moves to enhance employee opportunities as the company breaks ground on a project in the region that could bring 2,000 jobs.

The online giant will break ground on its new hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky Airport today. The air cargo hub comes with a $1.5 billion investment, according to WCPO. Amazon is leasing 900 acres of land from CVG to support 100 planes, requiring pilots, aircraft mechanics, co-pilots, air traffic controllers and management.

The company has also recently announced an “air gateway” and package-sorting operation at Wilmington Air Park. The company has invested in the region with a distribution center in Monroe and is building a last-mile distribution center in Kettering.

“Amazon is growing its investment in the community with a gateway for their Amazon Air planes at the Wilmington Air Park as it continues to build out its air hub operation at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport,” the company said in a statement in November.

Just as the company is planning thousands of new jobs, the retail leader is investing in startup delivery companies launched by its own employees. Amazon has been trying to cut out traditional package carriers like UPS, FedEx and the United States Parcel Service.

Amazon is offering its employees up to $10,000 to start their own package delivery companies. It will also pay employees’ salaries for three months so the new business owners can get their companies off the ground more easily, according to a statement from Amazon.

“We received overwhelming interest from tens of thousands of individuals who applied to be part of the Delivery Service Partner program, including many employees,” said Dave Clark, senior vice president of worldwide operations. “We’ve heard from associates that they want to participate in the program but struggled with the transition. Now we have a path for those associates with an appetite for opportunities to own their own businesses.”

The Delivery Service Partner program launched in 2018, creating more than 200 new small businesses that have hired thousands of local drivers, according to Amazon. Amazon plans to add hundred more new businesses this year.

The new startups will have consistent delivery volume from Amazon, access to the online giant’s delivery technology, hands-on training and discounts on a suit of assets and services like Amazon-branded vans and uniforms, along with insurance.