Logistics expansion ahead for Memphis spurred partly by expected COVID-19 vaccine | Evanoff


Memphis' all-important logistics sector has nearly returned to its record employment level,pushed on by a flurry of new distribution centers despite early concerns the pandemicmight crush the shipping industry.

It’s widely known Memphis has been at the forefront of the nation’s logistics industry fordecades, but what happened here during the summer stands out.

Any thought the pandemic would cave in the region’s all-important industry — cargohauling — was put to rest by the expansion of freight centers in Greater Memphis.

Part of the expansion traces to demand for safety products meant to fend off the COVID-19virus as well as the reshaping of the labor force as more than 50 million people throughoutthe country continue to work from home.

While employment in the region’s transportation sector hasn’t returned to the record79,000-jobs level set in March, just before the national economy slid into a recession,employment almost has recovered in the sector.

About 6,000 of the 8,000 transportation jobs lost here by April have been refilled, half ofthem in August as new freight distribution centers began opening.

Logistics depots covering 3.3 million square feet came on line in the July-August-Septemberquarter, a volume that has spurred interest in building another 10.7 million square feet ofdistribution space next year, says the third-quarter Memphis report by real estate brokerCushman & Wakefield Commercial Advisors.........

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