The former Family Video store at 1614 S. MacArthur Blvd. will soon be used to house a Gopuff micro-fulfillment center, pending approval by the Springfield City Council at the Aug. 17 meeting.
Gopuff, a delivery service based out of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, currently operates more than 450 sites nationwide, including 285 micro-fulfillment centers, according to Abigail Benn, communication associate for the company. Unlike courier services that require drivers to visit a store and purchase products, Gopuff stocks about 3,000 everyday items including groceries, snacks, pet and baby supplies, over-the-counter medicines and more. This allows most orders to be fulfilled in 30 minutes or less, and Gopuff charges a flat delivery fee of $1.95, regardless of the quantity of items ordered or the time of day.
GoBrands, Inc., the parent company of Gopuff, plans to lease the former Family Video property and is seeking a Conditional Permitted Use (CPU) to allow package liquor sales. The business will not serve customers on-site, since the company focuses solely on making deliveries. The staff of the Springfield Sangamon Regional Planning Commission recommended approval, as did the Springfield Planning and Zoning Commission at a July 21 meeting. However, final approval is still needed from the Springfield City Council, which is set to vote on the request at the Aug. 17 meeting.
Alderman Joe McMenamin, who represents Ward 7 where the property is located, said he did not anticipate any potential issues with the zoning request being approved.
“I’m glad they chose MacArthur Boulevard; it’s always good to see occupied buildings,” McMenamin said. “We’re happy to see any clean up that takes place.”
Gopuff currently has Illinois locations in Chicago and Champaign-Urbana, as well as coverage in the St. Louis area. “My understanding is they are expanding further downstate,” said McMenamin.
Little Caesar’s Pizza will continue to occupy the front portion of the building, while Gopuff will lease the remaining space that formerly housed Family Video. Benn, the company spokesperson, said in an emailed statement, “We typically hire about a dozen employees and engage with local delivery partners when opening new micro-fulfillment centers.” However, she did not have a projected opening date for the new Springfield location.