Amazon is planning a rapid expansion in the US, confirming the locations of two new headquarters in New York and Northern Virginia.
The e-commerce giant is reportedly ramping up operations in its home country, with plans to funnel US$5 billion in cash into the split HQ2, while creating more than 50,000 jobs across the two locations.
According to the statement announcing the decision, the new Washington D.C. metro headquarters in Arlington will be located in National Landing, while the New York City headquarters will be in the Long Island City neighbourhood of Queens.
The New York location will reportedly consist of a four million square feet energy-efficient office space, with plans to expand this to eight million square feet as the business continues to grow. It’s also expected that the new office space will create an estimated incremental tax revenue of more than $10 billion over the next 20 years thanks to the company’s investment in job creation. The new National Landing office in Arlington, Virginia, will take up the same amount of space and is estimated to create incremental tax revenue of $3.2 billion in the next 20 years.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo of New York has praised Amazon’s decision to open a headquarters in Queens.
“New York can proudly say that we have attracted one of the largest, most competitive economic development investments in U.S. history,” he said.
“With an average salary of $150,000 per year for the tens of thousands of new jobs Amazon is creating in Queens, economic opportunity and investment will flourish for the entire region.
Amazon initially released its list of 20 preferred locations for its new headquarters nearly a year ago, with its chosen cities among the favourites to house the growing business’s operations. According to reports by The New York Times, Long Island City in New York and Arlington in Northern Virginia are good choices because each location has an educated workforce and are quickly becoming known as tech hubs. Amazon also employs workers in each of these cities already, with New York being home to 1,800 people working within the company’s advertising, fashion and publishing team, and 2,500 employees based in Arlington forming a critical part of the juggernaut’s technical and corporate team.
In a statement announcing the HQ2 locations, Jeff Bezos, founder and CEO of Amazon, said the company is looking forward to becoming a vital part of the community.
“These 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,” he said.
Amazon has reportedly decided to split its HQ2 between two locations to ease the impact the headquarters would have on local infrastructure, including traffic, public transport and housing. According to The Seattle Times, this decision has stemmed from the company’s hesitance to face the same criticism it has in Seattle, with claims its flagship headquarters has contributed to the city’s growing rates of homelessness and shortage of affordable housing.
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