Amazon

Packages pass down a conveyor belt before receiving a shipping label at Amazon in Shakopee, Minnesota. 

An Amazon sorting facility will open at the Fairbanks airport on March 18.

Fairbanks International Airport officials, during a Thursday presentation to the Transportation & Infrastructure Committee of the Greater Fairbanks Chamber of Commerce, said that Amazon will commence a sorting and distribution center next month.

Up to 40 employees will be sorting packages at the Old Northern Air Cargo building before transferring them to the post office across the street for delivery, according to the presentation. Sun Country Airlines will operate the daily 737 cargo flights carrying the packages.

As of Thursday evening, Amazon officials had not responded to requests from the News-Miner seeking comment.

The facility can open access to a bigger variety of products for residents in the Interior, but it can also affect local businesses, Jinnel Choiniere, president and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce, wrote in an email to the News-Miner.

“We encourage residents to make their purchases from local businesses whenever possible. Dollars spent locally support your friends, neighbors and your neighbors’ friends,” Choiniere wrote. “Of course, access to certain products can be challenging, especially for Bush communities. We are happy to see businesses improving their service to Interior Alaska. If this facility employs local residents and ensures that Alaskans receive their purchases in a timely manner, then that will benefit residents as well.”

Contact staff writer Alena Naiden at 459-7587. Follow her at twitter.com/FDNMlocal.