Montreal

Amazon to open new packing, shipping warehouse in Lachine

The corporation said the new location will create 300 new full-time jobs, and will be in operation before the 2020 holiday season. 

The corporation says it will create 300 new jobs in the area

The Lachine location will be the first Amazon fulfillment centre in Quebec, and is expected to create 300 full-time jobs. (The Canadian Press/Chris Young)

Amazon Canada will be opening its first Quebec-based distribution warehouse in Lachine, it announced Friday.

The company said the new location will create 300 new full-time jobs, and will be in operation before the 2020 holiday season. 

Employees at the site will be responsible for packing and shipping items to customers.

Those are jobs the area sorely needs, said Maja Vodanovic, mayor of Montreal's Lachine borough.

"Thirty thousand jobs [used to be there], but it's now like a deserted zone," Vodanovic said.

Vodanovic originally told CBC News she expects the centre will be located near the St-Pierre Interchange, on Berge du Canal Street.

Lachine borough mayor Maja Vodanovic said the new warehouse will create jobs in an area that sorely needs them. (Jay Turnbull/CBC)

Montreal had previously pitched the space to Amazon in a failed bid to get the company's second headquarters to relocate to the city.

However, a representative for the borough later said it would likely be in an industrial sector north of Highway 20.

Vodanovic said that no subsidies were offered to Amazon for the warehouse.

Amazon already has similar centres in British Columbia, Alberta and Ontario. Those jobs reportedly pay $16 per hour.

The company's distribution warehouses have a history of controversy, with workers complaining about the unrelenting pace of the work and the low pay, leading to walkouts.

Amazon Canada itself has been accused of firing workers who attempted to unionize.

Alexandre Gagnon, vice-president of Amazon Canada, said the Lachine site will help to "better serve our customers across Quebec."

With files from Jay Turnbull and Radio-Canada

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