ST. CLOUD -- An Amazon fulfillment center is coming to St. Cloud. Mayor Dave Kleis made the announcement Tuesday during his 16th annual State of the City address on the stage at Eastman Park by Lake George.

Amazon will be here in St. Cloud this year.  They've done the permits, there are hundreds of jobs.  It will be a fulfillment center out by Heatherwood Road out by 94.

Kleis gave no other details about that project. Amazon currently has 110 fulfillment centers in the U.S. and 185 globally.  The only location in Minnesota right now is in Shakopee.

St. Cloud Economic Development Director Cathy Mehelich says no city or state incentives are part of this project.

Amazon Media Relations spokesperson Nikki Wheeler calls the facility a delivery station and Amazon Hub Locker+.  She says, "This new delivery station will provide fast and efficient delivery for customers, with the added benefit of an additional free, secure, and convenient pickup and returns location."

They expect the site to open in 2021.

Kleis also says he's expecting Raising Cane's to break ground on their restaurant along Division Street later this year. That is being built on the former Ciatti's lot.

A change in the parking rules is coming to downtown St. Cloud. Kleis announced a pilot program beginning June 1st.

So the ramps will be free from 5:00 p.m. all week nights until the next morning and on the weekends.  And, if you use the park assist app free for an hour.

Kleis says in exchange, you will need to pay for metered parking on the streets 24 hours a day seven days a week. This will be in effect through the end of the year.

Kleis says the cost to pay in a St. Cloud parking stall is $398 a year compared to Duluth at $603 and Rochester at over $1,000.

Another change coming to downtown is more festoon lighting.

Look for those this year on St. Germain, we're going to do a few blocks.  It's not a cheap thing, but thanks to donations we're going to do a few blocks.

Kleis also says you can look for Clark Field to become the city's 97th park later this year.

A new initiative for the mayor, once a month he's planning a "Mayor and Friends" event where he's joined by a musician, comedian, or poet to entertain attendees. That is in addition to his weekly Town Hall meetings which he's expecting to hit number 800 later this summer.

This year's Granite City Days will be focused on music. Kleis talked about several of the highlights Tuesday during his annual State of the City Address. He says the kickoff event is going to be at St. Cloud State University's Husky Stadium.

And we're going to open up with the traditional symphony, but we're also going to open up with the Fabulous Armidillos.

Kleis says to look for more information about the annual Liberty Block Party that Friday night coming out soon, Saturday will have a parade followed by a music crawl at several venues downtown, with fireworks over Lake George. Kleis also asked residents to create a song for St. Cloud as a contest for Granite City Days. Granite City Days are scheduled for June 24th through the 27th.

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