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MINNEAPOLIS-Plantation, FL-based DHL has opened a new regional sort center at 3701 85th Ave. DHL is investing $3 million in the 21,532-sf regional sort center, which has created 41 jobs.

The facility is leased from Old Dominion Freight Line, which owns the building. Fred Beljaars, executive vice president for operations at DHL, says his company is out to “shake up the US express delivery and logistics market by providing greater choice and more competition,” and the new DHL sort facility in the city is part of that effort.

“The new Minneapolis facility will benefit DHL’s customers in the region by expanding overnight delivery services throughout Minnesota, and by providing greater connectivity between the East and West Coasts,” Beljaars says. Overnight delivery will also be available to parts of Wisconsin and Iowa.

The facility is the seventh new regional sort center to be added to the DHL network this year as part of a $1.2-billion investment program launched by DHL in June. In the last two months, the company announced the start of construction on its expanded air and ground hub in Wilmington, OH, and the opening of new regional sort centers in Denver, Salt Lake City; Memphis; Baton Rouge, LA; Erie, PA and Phoenix.

DHL says the center will contribute about $330,000 annually to the local economy through employee payroll and taxes. It will handle a variety of shipments, including letter and parcel items, palletized and container freight. The facility, which will operate six days a week, has a sort capacity of 4,000 letter pieces per hour and 3,500 parcels per hour. The sort center will serve 12 DHL service stations in the region.

By the end of 2004, DHL’s expanded ground network will include 19 regional sort centers and more than 7,950 truck runs per week. With annual revenues over $25 billion in 2003, DHL is in the international express and logistics industry and is owned by Deutsche Post World Net.

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