Amazon is installing lockers in thousands of apartment buildings across the nation, with many ready just in time for the holiday shopping season.
According to news in The Wall Street Journal, Amazon has signed contracts with apartment owners and managers representing more than 850,000 units across the U.S. to begin installing locker systems in their buildings. Several of the nation’s largest operators, including AvalonBay Communities Inc., Equity Residential, Greystar and The Bozzuto Group, have already signed up.
Hub by Amazon will accept packages from all carriers, and the orders don’t even have to be made on Amazon. The lockers will be available only to residents, who will receive a notification when they have a package, along with a code to retrieve it. Lockers will be placed both indoors and outdoors, equipped with cellular connectivity so apartment owners don’t have to connect it to an Ethernet cable.
The locker program will help landlords handle the packages received each day, which can take several hours to sort.
Toby Bozzuto, chief executive at The Bozzuto Group of Greenbelt, Maryland, which manages about 68,000 apartment units, said staff at one of his apartment complexes spend about three hours each day sorting packages.
“I think about how much money I spend on my amenity spaces, and all of a sudden we were in a situation pre-Amazon Hub where we had boxes stacking up,” he said. Bozzuto is in the process of installing the lockers in four buildings, including one for residents 55 and over.
Apartment owners will pay about $10,000 to $20,000 to purchase the lockers, but there is no monthly fee. In fact, owners said Amazon is offering its lockers at about half the cost that some other companies had been charging.
And while most landlords said they don’t plan to charge residents initially, they could make back some of that cost in savings on staff labor.
Amazon already has lockers throughout the U.S., and recently announced it is rolling them out at select Whole Foods stores.