Details are still scarce on that possible Amazon store in Seattle, but I know quite a few details on one of Amazon's other brick-and-mortar ventures.
For the past few years Amazon has been blanketing college campuses with delivery lockers installed both on-campus and in off-campus convenience stores. At the same time Amazon has opened a few unstores delivery locations at select US universities, and now Amazon is combining the two programs.
A tenant by the name of "Amazon Pickup Store" is now leasing a 2,363-square-foot space which is currently being renovated. Compared to the 40,000- to 70,000-square-foot space taken up by your average big box bookstore, that is a comparatively tiny storefront. The new Amazon location is about the same size as the unstore on the campus at Purdue University, or those RadioShack stores that rumors said Amazon wanted.
An Amazon job listing for a "Pickup Point Manager" suggests that Amazon will run the store just like their Purdue U. location (just like I predicted in February). Furthermore, the Business Courier reported that Amazon said it plans to expand the concept to other universities. Amazon lists open positions for UC Berkeley and UC Santa Barbara on its job site, listing the name of its subsidiary as "Amazon Pickups Points LLC".
That is apparently the new name for the unstores Amazon has opened on college campuses. You can find more details on Amazon's website.
We cannot, however, say at this time whether the rumored Seattle store is part of this program. Geekwire looked into the story yesterday. They sent someone over, checked the licenses, and poked around, but could not prove a connection to Amazon.
They said that what they glimpsed through the shrouded windows suggested that this was a bookstore, and that one planning document said that the company was named "Project Anne". But they couldn't show a clear connection to Amazon.
On the other hand Amazon still isn't talking about that store, which is and of itself a telling clue.
If Amazon had no connection to that store they would have said so by now. Their continued silence suggests that there is a connection, one which Amazon was hoping we would not notice.