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New Nordstrom fulfillment center in Lancaster County to create 369 jobs

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Nordstrom Inc. has announced it will build an East Coast fulfillment center in Lancaster County, bringing a $79 million construction investment and 369 jobs with it.

Construction started Monday, according to Nordstrom, a Seattle-based fashion specialty retailer. The facility is expected to open in the summer of 2015 at the Conewago Industrial Park in West Donegal Township just outside Elizabethtown.

Construction of the 672,000-square-foot building — which includes an additional 470,000-square-foot mezzanine — will be handled by H&M Company Inc. of Jackson, Tenn.

This is the third fulfillment center for the company, and it will bring faster delivery for Nordstrom customers on the East Coast, according to a company news release.

According to a news release from Gov. Tom Corbett, Nordstrom will create 369 full-time jobs within three years. Nordstrom said that there also will be opportunities for part-time and seasonal employees and that it expects to have as many as 700 full-time employees there in the future.

The company also had been interested in other sites around the region for the fulfillment center.

Joe Achenbach, a senior associate at Trammell Crow Co. outside Philadelphia, confirmed Tuesday the proposed Lebanon Valley Distribution Center in Bethel Township was a finalist for the center.

He would not comment on the prospects for the property with Nordstrom out of the picture.

According to minutes from the Franklin County commissioners, a site in Antrim Township was also under consideration. However, the commissioners there did not approve a Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance designation for the property. The Lancaster and Lebanon county sites each had LERTA designations.

Nordstrom spokeswoman Tara Darrow said via email Tuesday the Lancaster County location provided the best combination of availability of a local workforce to meet hiring needs, proximity to shipping hubs, and flexibility and space at the building.

“We appreciate the help we got from different areas who worked toward making this happen, but ultimately felt that (Elizabethtown) was the right spot for us,” Darrow said.

The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development said it has approved a number of grants for the project, including:

  • $1.107 million from the Pennsylvania First Program for investment and job creation,
  • $1.107 million in job creation tax credits and
  • $166,050 to train a new workforce.

Nordstrom has 261 stores in 35 states, but none in the midstate.

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