Most on-demand delivery centres are not in residential areas: research

Flink on Amsterdam's Nassaukade Photo:
Flink on Amsterdam’s Nassaukade. Photo:

More than half the on-demand delivery service distribution centres in the Netherlands are not located in residential areas, according to research by property advisory group Colliers.

Colliers identified 123 distribution centres and found that just 11% are in a purely residential area, and 34% are in a shopping street in which homes are located above retail outlets.

The findings were published shortly after Amsterdam announced it would ban  delivery centres, or dark stores, in areas where people live. Colliers identified 34 distribution points within the city boundaries.

‘Residential/shopping areas are already faced with the hustle and bustle and
noise of others shops. It is therefore questionable whether on-demand delivery services cause ‘new’ nuisance in these areas,’ Colliers said.

Nevertheless, the advisory group said it recommended that on-demand delivery services relocate and only establish themselves in industrial or shopping areas or developed new ideas, such as using vacant floors in multi-story car parks.

‘Even better, the hubs can open their doors to customers, shaking off the
negative word “dark store” by becoming a real store in addition to an app. Certainly
if they do this 24/7, they could offer something that traditional supermarkets
do not,’ Colliers said.


Delivery firms in Amsterdam are fighting back against the ban and three court cases are already pending.

Meanwhile, Gorillas, one of four fast delivery firms operating in the Netherlands, has said it will reduce its opening hours from midnight to 11pm. ‘This way we can reduce the nuisance in the later evening,’ a spokesman said.

Gorillas has also announced plans to sack half of its global office staff of 600 and concentrate on five markets, including the Netherlands. The company said it is looking at ‘all possible strategic options’ for its operations in Spain, Denmark, Italy, and Belgium.

Flink is the largest player in the Netherlands, with 63 distribution hubs in 38 cities.
Gorillas is also originally from Germany, and operates in fourteen cities and has 29 hubs, Colliers said.

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