FedEx at Forty: Night Moves
Boots on the ground at the FedEx World Hub.
photographs by Larry Kuzniewski
The FedEx World Hub is one of those staggeringly impressive technical achievements of the post-Industrial Revolution-era, in a league with Henry Ford’s Model T assembly line. To put it one way, the Hub covers 862.8 acres at Memphis International Airport, has a sorting capacity of 160,000 packages and 265,000 documents an hour, and contains 42 miles of conveyor belts. Put another way: Each evening, 7,000 Memphians descend upon the Hub and flex the muscle of FedEx’s corporate might. Maybe most remarkably of all: It’s a “smart” operation, and FedEx always knows where each package is at every point in time it’s in Memphis.