Amazon plans to open 2,000 drive-thru grocery stores across America

Excerpted from MODERN CITIES – Known for a business model that abandons brick-and-mortar shopping, Seattle-based Amazon plans to open as many as 2,000 grocery stores over the next decade.  If the company is successful in pulling off their plan, it would become the country’s fourth largest grocery chain behind Walmart, Kroger and Albertsons.

PHOTO:A rendering of the drive-thru grocery pickup concept submitted in planning documents (Silicon Valley Business Journal).Photo provided.

However, unlike your grandfather’s big box, land consuming supermarket, Amazon plans to leverage online shopping with the traditional brick-and-mortar retail experience.  At 10,000 square-feet, stores will be about the same size as the average CVS or Walgreens Pharmacy with as little as eight parking stalls for pickups.

Employing 15, three to five workers will be dedicated to bringing orders out to waiting motorists. The expected wait time is anticipated to be five minutes and a quarter of the trips are expected to occur between 5:00 and 7:30 p.m.

Stores will carry mostly perishable items such as meat, produce and milk. In-store touch screens (or your smartphone) will be used to order non-perishable food items for same-day delivery service. In addition, stores would also only be available to $15 a month Amazon’s Fresh service subscribers.

According to City of Seattle planning documents, Amazon’s grocery business will operate like this: When placing an online order, customers will schedule a specific 15-minute to two-hour pick up window. Peak time slots will sell out, which will help manage traffic flow within the customer parking adjacent to the building. When picking up purchased items, customers can either drive into a designated parking area with eight parking stalls where the purchased items will be delivered to their cars or they can walk into the retail area to pick up their items. Customers will also be able to walk into the retail room to place orders on a tablet. Walk in customers will have their products delivered to them in the retail room. 

According to CEO Jeff Bezos, it intends to open 300 to 400 bookstores nationwide as well. The company’s first bookstore opened in Seattle in 2015 and locations in Chicago and Portland are anticipated to come online by the end of the year. Other announced locations include New York City and San Diego.

READ MORE in Modern Cities by Ennis Davis, AICP. 

Shared By