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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

Tech digs in for long domestic terror fight

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

With domestic extremist networks scrambling to regroup online, experts fear the next attack could come from a radicalized individual — much harder than coordinated mass events for law enforcement and platforms to detect or deter.

The big picture: Companies like Facebook and Twitter stepped up enforcement and their conversations with law enforcement ahead of Inauguration Day. But they'll be tested as the threat rises that impatient lone-wolf attackers will lash out.

The pandemic could be worsening childhood obesity

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The 10-month long school closures and the coronavirus pandemic are expected to have a big impact on childhood obesity rates.

Why it matters: About one in five children are obese in the U.S. — an all-time high — with worsening obesity rates across income and racial and ethnic groups, data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey show.

Dave Lawler, author of World
17 mins ago - World

Biden's Russia challenge

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The Biden administration has already proposed a five-year extension of the last treaty constraining the U.S. and Russian nuclear arsenals, announced an urgent investigation into a massive Russia-linked cyberattack, and demanded the release of Russia’s leading opposition figure, Alexey Navalny.

Why it matters: Those three steps in Biden's first week underscore the challenge he faces from Vladimir Putin — an authoritarian intent on weakening the U.S. and its alliances, with whom he’ll nonetheless have to engage on critical issues.