Re­port: Ama­zon in talks to build new HQ near D.C.

CEO Jeff Be­zos has sev­eral links to Wash­ing­ton

Albany Times Union - Sunday - - NATION / WORLD - By Ken Sweet Associated Press New York

Re­tail gi­ant Ama­zon Inc. is in “ad­vanced talks” to open its se­cond head­quar­ters in the Wash­ing­ton, D.C., metropoli­tan area, The Wash­ing­ton Post re­ported Satur­day.

Ama­zon, based in Seat­tle, is ap­par­ently se­ri­ously con­sid­er­ing an area known as Crys­tal City. It’s a large res­i­den­tial and of­fice com­plex in Ar­ling­ton, Va., just south of Wash­ing­ton, the Post said, cit­ing uniden­ti­fied sources.

Ama­zon an­nounced last year that the re­tail gi­ant was look­ing to open a se­cond head­quar­ters some­where in North Amer­ica, bring­ing with it as many as 50,000 new jobs. Sev­eral state and lo­cal gov­ern­ments threw their hats in the ring, of­fer­ing Ama­zon mil­lions in tax in­cen­tives if they opened their new head­quar­ters in their city.

The Wash­ing­ton metropoli­tan area was long con­sid­ered a top con­tender for Ama­zon’s se­cond head­quar­ters. Com­pany founder and Chief Ex­ec­u­tive Of­fi­cer Jeff Be­zos has sev­eral con­nec­tions to the area. He’s the owner of The Wash­ing­ton Post and owns a home in the area. When the com­pany an­nounced a list of 20 top con­tenders in Jan­uary, it in­cluded both Wash­ing­ton as well as Mont­gomery County, Mary­land, which is just north of D.C.

Crys­tal City is served by a mass tran­sit sys­tem and ma­jor high­ways, both qual­i­fi­ca­tions that Ama­zon has said is re­quired for its new head­quar­ters as well.

Ama­zon re­port­edly be­ing in “ad­vanced talks” does not mean the deal is cer­tain. Shortly after the Post pub­lished its story, Mike Grella, Ama­zon’s eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment di­rec­tor posted on Twit­ter, “Memo to the ge­nius leak­ing info about Crys­tal City, VA as #HQ2 se­lec­tion. You’re not do­ing Crys­tal City, VA any fa­vors.”

Photos by Jared Soares / The New York Times

The Crys­tal City neigh­bor­hood of Ar­ling­ton, Va. Many in­vestors and of­fi­cials be­lieve Ama­zon sees North­ern Vir­ginia as the best fit for a se­cond head­quar­ters site. Among the up­sides: good tran­sit, di­verse res­i­dents, a friendly busi­ness cli­mate, and a sin­gle de­vel­oper with enough land. Below, Crys­tal City is seen from across the Po­tomac in Wash­ing­ton.

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