Capping off more than a year of speculation, Amazon has announced that it will be building its second headquarters in two separate locations: just outside of New York City, and just outside of Washington, D.C.
The exact locations are Long Island City, in the borough of Queens, and Crystal City, which is a part of Arlington, Virginia, 7 miles southwest of Washington.
The electronic commerce giant said it will spend up to $5 billion building the split headquarters, eventually hiring up to 50,000 people.
The decision means that Amazon will soon have three headquarters: the city of its origins in Seattle, and the new Long Island and Arlington locations.
In a statement, Amazon said chief executive officer Jeff Bozos said the two locations “will allow us to attract world-class talent that will help us to continue inventing for customers for years to come. The team did a great job selecting these sites, and we look forward to becoming an even bigger part of these communities.”
Amazon announced in the fall of 2017 that it wanted to build a second headquarters, setting off a frenzied and unprecedented campaign involving hundreds of cities and locations across North America who were interesting in landing the company.
Ultimately, Albuquerque, Denver, El Paso, and Phoenix all made pitches, with Denver earlier this year landing on the company’s finalists’ list.
Officials in Denver are saying that they think the Mile High City lost out because it wasn’t that far away from Amazon’s original headquarters and that reportedly the city, working with Colorado officials, offered incentives of less than $100 million.
But those same officials are also saying that Denver, by making the finalists’ list, received millions of dollars in free publicity nationally.
That publicity, said Sam Bailey, the vice-president of the Metro Denver Economic Development Corporation, has also spurred other companies to consider moving to Denver and Colorado.
Despite the decision, Amazon remains a huge presence in metro Denver with a sorting center and fulfillment center in Aurora, delivery center in Centennial, PrimeNow Center in Denver, and additional fulfillment center in Thornton.
Although outgoing Governor John Hickenlooper had earlier expressed reservations about Denver or Colorado actually securing Amazon’s second headquarters, he said the bid to get the facility turned out to be a good thing for Colorado.
“We used the application as an opportunity to come together across sectors and evaluate what’s best about our state,” Hickenlooper said in the wake of the Amazon Long Island/Arlington announcement.
“We came together on areas where we have a shared commitment to grow,” the Governor added.
By Garry Boulard
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