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Not even one full day's package delivery in my large NYC apartment building. Photo: Jennifer A. Kingson/Axios

The amount of stuff getting delivered to apartment buildings is overwhelming the ability to store it and make sure it doesn't get lost or stolen — creating opportunity for the "proptech" industry.

Why it matters: "Proptech" companies sell technology products that solve real estate problems — in this case, systems à la Amazon Lockers — and this year they're slavering at the surfeit of package deliveries.

Driving the news: As people order everything from gym equipment to car tires online, apartment buildings are converting laundry, bike, storage and common rooms into package areas.

  • Landlords are using software systems like BuildingLink and Notifi that alert residents to deliveries.
  • Some are creating physical spaces — like shelves, lockers and cabinets — for secure pickup and storage.
  • But mail room constraints aren't the only problem: Apartment staffers are overworked and stressed out from the crush of packages, which has intensified since big shippers expanded weekend deliveries.

"Currently around 20 percent of residents at a multifamily property receive at least one package per day," Multifamily Properties Quarterly reported in November.

  • "That could mean staff are spending, on average, five hours a day processing and sorting packages instead of assisting residents."

How it works: Instead of making residents paw through huge piles of boxes in the lobby, buildings are hiring companies to build modular systems where deliveries of all type — from the local dry cleaner to GrubHub and Uber Eats — can be locked away for recipients to retrieve.

  • "We have a property in L.A. that converted an entire floor to be a package room to accommodate the type of shipping its residents were doing," said Donna Logback, head of marketing at Package Concierge, which sells such systems.
  • "The beauty of the lockers is that you’re not having that human-to-human contact — and you don’t have a kayak waiting in the lobby for a week."

Go deeper

Updated 3 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Omicron dashboard

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

  1. Health: Pfizer and Moderna boosters overwhelmingly prevent Omicron hospitalizations, CDC finds — Omicron pushes COVID deaths toward 2,000 per day — The pandemic-proof health care giant.
  2. Vaccines: The case for Operation Warp Speed 2.0 — Starbucks drops worker vaccine or test requirement after SCOTUS ruling — Kids' COVID vaccination rates are particularly low in rural America.
  3. Politics: Biden concedes U.S. should have done more testing — Arizona says it "will not be intimidated" by Biden on anti-mask school policies — Federal judge blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for federal workers.
  4. World: American Airlines flight to London forced to turn around over mask dispute — WHO: COVID health emergency could end this year — Greece imposes vaccine mandate for people 60 and older — Austria approves COVID vaccine mandate for adults.
  5. Variant tracker

Arizona governor sues Biden administration over COVID funds tied to mandates

A teacher prepares a hallway barrier to help students maintain social distancing at John B. Wright Elementary School in Tucson, Arizona, on Aug. 14, 2020. Photo: Cheney Orr/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) filed a lawsuit Friday against the Biden administration for ordering the state to stop allocating federal COVID relief funds to schools that don't comply with public health recommendations such as masking, the Arizona Republic reports.

Why it matters: The Treasury Department said last week that the state would have to pay back the money if Ducey does not redesignate the $173 million programs to ensure they don't "undermine efforts to stop the spread of COVID-19."

Federal judge blocks Biden's vaccine mandate for federal workers

President Biden speaking from Eisenhower Executive Office Building on Jan. 21. Photo: Yuri Gripas/Abaca/Bloomberg via Getty Images

A federal judge in Texas blocked the Biden administration from enforcing its coronavirus vaccine mandate for federal workers on Friday, citing the outcome of last week's Supreme Court ruling that nullified the administration's vaccine-or-test requirement for large employers.

Why it matters: It's a blow to President Biden's efforts to increase the U.S.' vaccination rates, though much of the federal workforce has already been vaccinated against the virus.