After a lengthy public bidding process, e-commerce giant Amazon decided that it would build its new headquarters in not one location but two with its new offices split between Washington, DC and New York City.
However, following opposition from residents and local lawmakers, the company has just announced that it is canceling its plans to build a second headquarters in NYC.
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Amazon explained its decision to abandon its New York headquarters in a statement (opens in new tab) announcing the cancellation, saying:
“After much thought and deliberation, we’ve decided not to move forward with our plans to build a headquarters for Amazon in Long Island City, Queens. For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term. While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City.”
Amazon will not be choosing another location for its HQ2 and instead the company will move forward with its existing plans to build out its presence in Northern Virginia and Nashville.
The company's plans to establish a headquarters in Queens were discussed behind closed doors without input from local lawmakers. To make things worse, the city of New York agreed to give Amazon major concessions including $1.5bn in incentives in exchange for creating 25,000 jobs.
However, these jobs would not be filled by local residents and instead outside talent would be needed to fill the roles. This influx of new people would drive up costs and could even push out long-time residents that are already dealing with gentrification and rising costs.
Amazon would likely have had a difficult time getting development started without local support and the project's costs could have ballooned as a result of legal battles opposing its new headquarters.
Via The Verge (opens in new tab)
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