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Macy's on track for spring opening in Berkeley County

January 08, 2012|By MATTHEW UMSTEAD | matthew.umstead@herald-mail.com
  • Peter Longo, president of Macy's Logistics and Operations, struggles to open a gift as Berkeley County Council President William Stubblefield, left, and Acting Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin watch. They were on hand for Macy's online fulfillment center groundbreaking ceremony on April 15.
File Photo

MARTINSBURG, W.Va. — The 1.3-million-square-foot Macy's fulfillment center in Berkeley County remains on schedule to open and begin operating this spring, according to Berkeley County Development Authority Stephen Christian.

"In a year's time, they've just made amazing progress," Christian said in a recent phone interview.

The formal announcement of the retail giant's plan to build a facility for its Internet business in Cumbo Yard Industrial Park near Martinsburg was made Dec. 13, 2010, Christian said.

"The building itself is done," Christian said.

Work to outfit the interior of the new massive facility along Caperton Boulevard continues, and hiring is under way, he said.

Christian said he believes the company has begun filling key management positions and those individuals are getting "real-world" experience at other Macy's distribution facilities.

By 2014, about 1,200 people are expected to be employed at the facility, not including hundreds of seasonal workers, Christian said.

Multiple jobs have been posted by the company in the last few months at www.macysjobs.com, where job seekers can apply for a particular position, according to the company's website.

When Macy's decided to locate in Berkeley County, Christian said other companies took notice and at least a portion of the prospective investor interest in the community last year can be directly linked to that decision.

Last summer, officials affiliated with an unnamed company's potential investment that has since been dubbed Project Java told Christian they wanted to visit the Macy's project site when he picked them up at the airport. Their interest in the progress of the Macy's project was the first thing they discussed, Christian said.

Christian still feels Berkeley County has "a good chance" of landing the Project Java investment, which was expected to be decided last fall.

The company initially indicated an interest in starting construction in the fall of 2011 on a distribution facility similar to Macy's, but Christian said that has been delayed as internal corporate and site analysis continues.

Christian said he is hopeful a decision regarding Project Java will be made in the first quarter of this year.

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