Construction of an 850,000 sq ft development on Wilson Bowden Developments' Kingsway Business Park in Rochdale has started.
Winvic Construction has been appointed to construct a 616,000 sq ft distribution centre and 250,000 sq ft of mezzanine space.
Representatives of JD Sports cut the first sod at the development at a ceremony on Tuesday.
Last month JD Sports ended more than a year of speculation by confirming it will move to the purpose-built distribution centre after it agreed an undisclosed sum to acquire the freehold of the site from Wilson Bowden.
The retailer's distribution operation is currently based at Segro's Heywood Distribution Park.
Wilson Bowden Developments and the North West Development Agency have been leading the development of the Kingsway site as part of a partnership also involving Rochdale Development Agency and Rochdale Council.
Roger Ellis, chief executive of Rochdale Council, said: "The deal shows the real progress we are making with fantastic sites like Kingsway making the borough a destination of choice for leading companies.
"It's also great news for the local community as JD Sports will be retaining existing jobs and attracting new employment opportunities to the borough."
Construction work is expected to be completed by spring of next year. The warehouse will be one of the largest developed in the North West in the past ten years. Detailed planning consent for the development was granted in January 2009.
Kingsway Business Park covers 420 acres and is located next to junction 21 of the M62 motorway.
Jones Lang LaSalle and P3 Property Consultants are joint agents on the scheme.