Amazon Makes It Official: Selects New York City, Arlington For New Headquarters

Amazon Makes It Official: Selects New York City, Arlington For New Headquarters

Amazon's decision to build part of its new headquarters in New York's Long Island City neighborhood with the aid of tax benefits is a "bad deal" for local residents, according to two NY lawmakers who have repeatedly criticized the state's efforts to lure the e-commerce giant.

Nonetheless, the extra space will help the rapidly growing company.

Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio on Tuesday said Amazon's decision was a vindication of that strategy, which the mayor said would benefit all New Yorkers. Watch their remarks in the player above. New York City changed the lights on the Empire State Building to Amazon's signature orange color.

The prospect of a rise in housing costs in two cities known for scarce affordable housing is a chief concern for many. The reason Amazon gave: they are best suited to attract the high-skilled workers the company wants.

Amazon - which initially launched a nationwide search for a single, region-transforming campus to supplement its Seattle base- said it made a decision to opt for two sites to gain greater access to brainpower. The hope is that Amazon will attract other companies and ultimately boost the local economies.

"Either you are creating jobs or you are losing jobs", New York Governor Andrew Cuomo told a news conference on Tuesday. That works out to just under $32,000 per job - about half of the $61,000 per job that Amazon said it will receive from NY to create the same number of jobs at the site in Long Island City in Queens.

The tech giant will receive up to a $505 million grant from the state to build an up to 8 million-square-foot office campus around Anable Basin in Long Island City, according to a memorandum of understanding among Albany, City Hall and Amazon. It now owns well-known brands, including grocer Whole Foods and online shoe-seller Zappos.

The company has already had to navigate community issues at its more than 45,000-person urban campus in Seattle.

Amazon has always been a master of extracting tax incentives by playing local governments off one another as they vie for fulfillment centers, offices, and other sources of jobs. The company already had large corporate workforces in greater Washington and NY. The area is trying to revive itself after thousands of federal jobs moved elsewhere. Being near the nation's capital could help Amazon with lobbying efforts as the company faces rising scrutiny from politicians. Construction started long before Amazon's plans were hatched, said Harmar Thompson, executive vice president of LCOR.

The new outposts won't appear overnight.

Bernstein said his fund is looking at investing in two buildings near the Amazon site to develop into mixed retail-residential space.

Amazon says its new second headquarters will be split between New York City and Arlington, Virginia - ending months of speculation.

Losers on the firm's 20-city short list included Newark in New Jersey, Columbus in OH and Miami in Florida.

Virginia's state and local governments agreed to shell out as much as $796 million in tax incentives and infrastructure improvements over the next 15 years in exchange for 25,000 well-paying tech jobs. It plans to hold company-wide events at the new locations, including shareholder meetings.

"What the selection of D.C. and NY underlines is how the dominant players continue to be dominant". Among its 20 finalists, the company had selected two locations in the NY metro area and three in the D.C. area.

The Nashville Operations Center is expected to deal primarily with "customer fulfillment, transportation, supply chain, and other similar activities". In each city, this agreement is only binding provided the average wage for jobs created is over $150,000.

It confirmed performance-based incentives of $1.5bn from the state of NY and $573m if it meets targets of the 25,000 people hired for the Arlington site netting an average wage of over $150,000.

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