Published: Tue, November 13, 2018
Business | By Tara Barton

Amazon HQ2: NY politicians criticize 'corporate welfare'

Amazon HQ2: NY politicians criticize 'corporate welfare'

- Amazon has chosen Northern Virginia and New York City as the locations for the company's newest headquarters, according to a new report.

The company was planning to split its second headquarters, dubbed "HQ2", evenly between two cities, and among the finalists that Amazon was holding advanced talks with were Dallas, Long Island City in NY and Arlington near Washington, D.C., Reuters reported last week, citing sources.

The e-commerce giant is expected to make an official announcement on Tuesday.

For the winners, though, Amazon validated that NY and Washington, D.C. have the environment needed by fast-growing, technology-driven companies.

The Circle City was among the 20 final cities that were being considered by the Seattle-based company.

FBN's Tracee Carrasco on reports Amazon is planning to split its second headquarters evenly between two locations.

Since Amazon pared the list to 20 cities in January, speculation has been rampant, with lists handicapping supposed front-runners.

Still, landing HQ2 would represent "incredible validation of just how far NY has come", says Jonathan Bowles, executive director of the Center for an Urban Future think tank.

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The other cities included Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Ohio, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Miami, Montgomery County in Maryland, Nashville, Newark, New York City, Northern Virginia, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, Toronto and Washington, D.C.

The decision process has been going on since at least the end of 2017 when Amazon essentially launched a contest that sparked competition among cities across the world, including in Seattle and other areas across Washington state.

Amazon's decision will likely lead to more foreign visitors, fuel more global flights and potentially stimulate more exports.

Dallas and Austin were among the 20 finalists - 19 in the US plus Toronto - in what became a yearlong search for a suitable second-but-equal headquarters to Amazon's original Seattle home.

The company said it would invest more than $5 billion over nearly two decades in a second headquarters, hiring as many as 50,000 full-time employees that would earn more than $100,000 a year on average. And by halving the size, Amazon would help ease potential issues with housing, transit and other areas where adding tens of thousands of workers could cause problems.

The split also raised questions about how equal the two new locations will be with Amazon's current Seattle base, which employs more than 45,000 people.

But Long Island City has also been straining to handle its growth. Amazon has said it might consider some also-rans for other projects.

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