SALT LAKE CITY — Amazon may not add its second headquarters to New York after all, according to The Washington Post.
Amazon is reportedly reconsidering moving one of its two new campuses to New York City after local politicians expressed concern about the project, the Post reports.
- The company hasn’t leased or purchased office space yet in the area, which would make it super easy to not build a site there, according to the Post.
- Amazon is slated to bring a second headquarters to Virginia, which Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam made official this week by signing a new bill, which I wrote about for the Deseret News.
- Similarly, Tennessee officials remain on board for Amazon to add a new 5,000-job location to Nashville, according to The Washington Post.
- “The question is whether it’s worth it if the politicians in New York don’t want the project, especially with how people in Virginia and Nashville have been so welcoming,” a source told The Washington Post.
Flashback: New York isn't totally onboard for bringing Amazon to the city. In November, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other Democrats in Queens criticized the plan for Amazon to bring its second headquarters to the city, CNBC reported.
- “Amazon is a billion-dollar company. The idea that it will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in tax breaks at a time when our subway is crumbling and our communities need MORE investment, not less, is extremely concerning to residents here,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted at the time.
She said it’s not just about Amazon, either.
- "Lastly, this isn't just about one company or one headquarters. It's about cost of living, corps paying their fair share, etc," she wrote in another tweet. "It's not about picking a fight, either. I was elected to advocate for our community's interests - & they've requested, clearly, to voice their concerns,” she tweeted.
Similar: New Yorkers expressed fear that the influx of 25,000 jobs for HQ2 would crowd the subways, which are already pretty crowded, according to Business Insider.
Does Utah have a shot?: If Amazon doesn’t add a second headquarters to New York, will they add a second location somewhere else? And, a bigger question: Does Utah have a shot?
- The answer is probably not. Back in January 2018, Amazon released a list of 200 cities that it was considering for its next headquarters. Utah did not make that list.
Why not Utah?: At the time, Amazon had called for proposals for its second headquarters — something that critics eventually called a marketing ploy by Amazon — through a nationwide search.
Utah took a measured approach with its proposal, according to the Deseret News.
- "We don't get flashy and our incentives are never the most lucrative," GOED Executive Director Val Hale told the Deseret News in September 2017. "We protect the taxpayer by not paying companies up front. We'll always be fundamentally based on post-performance."
Hale said Amazon was aiming for cities with larger populations, too.
- "Certainly, there's a lot of disappointment," Hale said. "But, looking at the short list we can see that the cities were of much larger populations than we have here and almost all were on the East Coast."
So then, where?: Amazon released a shortlist of cities for HQ2 before eventually choosing Virginia and New York as its options. As I reported, there were a few frontrunners in the mix, including Raleigh, North Carolina; Washington, D.C.; Boston; and Austin, Texas.
- If they were to still add a second HQ2, it’s no surprise it would be on the East Coast, according to Daniel Ives, head of technology research at GBH Insights,who spoke with CNBC.
- "We're big believers that a big East Coast presence is something that Bezos has been looking to get and the second HQ gets him there," he said.