Amazon Reportedly Changes Plans: Now Settling On Finalists For HQ2 - And HQ3

07 November, 2018, 11:08 | Author: Kevin Carter
  • Credit CBS3

The Wall Street Journal wrote Monday the decision to split HQ2 is to give Amazon the opportunity to hire more top tech talent in both areas.

Long Island City is one of four areas that New York City proposed in its bid for the Amazon project.

One of the other areas the online retail giant is considering is New York's Long Island City, according to a source familiar with the talks.

Amazon has been tight-lipped about the process and declined to comment on the latest news. The company recently announced that it would pay all its workers at least $15 an hour, but the employees at its second headquarters will be paid a lot more - Amazon says they'll make an average of more than $100,000 a year.

Amazon will reportedly split its second headquarters project, known as HQ2, among two cities, both the Wall Street Journal and The New York Times reported on Monday.

It's unclear where Amazon will put its second headquarters. The Seattle based biz finds these areas appealing due to their thousands of Amazon employees already in place in NYC and the DC area. By choosing more than a single location, it may be seeking to avoid criticism that its arrival will burden local infrastructure.

Some of the hubs started as an acknowledgment of a special tech expertise that had grown up in a specific area, some due to having purchased a company and leaving the staff in place, and others were simply bowing to the reality that not everyone wants to or can live in Seattle. Crystal City is a suburb of Washington, D.C. An exodus of government tenants left the area with relatively cheap, aging office space that could be used by Amazon while it renovates existing properties or builds anew.

"For instance, does it make it like less of an incentive for Amazon to go to NY because instead of offering 50,000 jobs, they'll only be able to offer about 25,000 jobs?"

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Still, the neighborhood's attractiveness, as well as a glut of former industrial properties, especially along the waterfront, have led to a building boom.

Heartland Town Square developers Gerald and David Wolkoff are now building a 1,200-unit residential complex in Long Island City called 5 Pointz Towers.

Long Island City is served by 8 subway lines, 13 bus lines, the East River Ferry, the Long Island Railroad, two bridges and a tunnel linking it with Manhattan.

Two sources familiar with the process confirmed to USA TODAY that Amazon has made the decision to shift its placement of a second headquarters co-equal with Seattle from one city to two.

Some of the final contenders are situated close to each other and draw from the same labor pools. The Empire State Development Corp., which has been handling negotiations with Amazon, has not disclosed the state's incentives package, though the Times reported it could be in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Amazon could announce its decision as early as this week.

"We're waiting to hear", Cooper told reporters Tuesday at a Council of State meeting. While those kinds of jobs would be fantastic to have in the future, "we need to add housing and transport first", added Wilcox, who previously ran the Billerica company E Ink, which supplies screens for Amazon's Kindle readers.

"I was afraid if we landed Amazon, they'd take all the oxygen out of the room", said David Townsend of real estate firm Newmark Knight Frank.


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