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

Darnell Taylor
November 14, 2018

Estimated figures show incremental tax revenue of $3.2 billion over 20 years from the project.

Redfin Chief Economist Daryl Fairweather reported that the online real estate company saw an 800 percent increase in viewing of homes in Long Island City, and 200 percent in National Landing following news of the HQ2 split. Amazon also could qualify for an additional $1.3 billion in as-of-right city benefits, bringing the total perks to almost $3 billion. That's on top of the jobs that will be created by building the two headquarters (which Amazon says will cost $US5 billion).

Long Island City was quickly gentrifying before the new tax law.

The three locations could create some 55,000 jobs in the next two decades.

For its headquarters, the company didn't go with the richest offer.

Despite New York City's tough reputation, it appears to have been out-negotiated by Virginia's Arlington County in the 238-city frenzy to snare Amazon's HQ2.

Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio officials addressed Amazon's decision on new headquarters in a briefing today.

- Performance-based direct incentives of $1.525 billion, based on 25,000 full-time, high-paying jobs created.

Let's hope the potential economic boost for NY isn't fly-by-night.

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"There is a much better way of allocating our taxpayer's money that will directly help the communities", said New York State Assemblyman Ron Kim, who represents parts of Queens.

The latest benefits - which include more than $1.7bn in incentives from NY, and more than $500m from Virginia - are tied to Amazon's delivery of its promises for jobs and investments. Large government contractors have offices and lobbying operations there.

The support - from the cities themselves, states and urban development organisations - includes a cash grant of up to $978m, over $1.2bn in tax credits and more than $200m in infrastructure investment to support thousands of new workers.

But it's also fair to review Amazon itself. Almost 35 million Americans live in such areas, communities that in most cases have higher poverty and unemployment rates than other USA communities or contain or are near pockets in desperate need of development.

It's exciting for some, worrisome for others: The arrival of a massive headquarters of technology giant Amazon in two East Coast communities is certain to bring huge changes.

There was no reference in the memoranda to collaboration on preserving housing affordability, hiring locally, or working with local educational institutions. In fact, it's officially part of National Landing. And JBG Smith, the developer that will be working with Amazon to build its new complex, in May announced an effort to preserve and construct low-priced housing in the surrounding area. Before the announcement, New York City council member Jimmy Van Bramer and state Sen.

The company said both locations would have at least 4 million sq ft of office space. Real estate firm Redfin tells FOX 5 that in the first 11 days of November, views of homes for sale in Crystal City were up 210 percent from previous year.

The agreement also pledges assistance in securing a helipad, with flights limited to 120 per year and limited to company executives. "That's what they did", Wiedefeld said. "So I don't have an idea about how they put together their transaction".

While the NY deal is worth more for Amazon, it also comes with more requirements than the Virginia agreement.

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