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October 16, 2019Cart

Business

by Westchester County Business Journal
by WCBJ

Amazon reportedly targets Queens and Virginia for HQ2

Westchester County’s long-shot bid at landing parts of the retail giant Amazon’s second headquarters appears to have reached its end.

Multiple national reports said the company plans to split its second headquarters between Long Island City in Queens and the D.C. suburb of Crystal City, Virginia. The decision to split the headquarters was first reported in The Wall Street Journal on Monday.

Then-Westchester County Executive Robert Astorino takes special delivery of his speech via a drone prior to his press conference on Sept. 26, 2017, to entice Amazon to establish an office in the county. Photo by Ryan Deffenbaugh

Westchester joined hundreds of other municipalities to bid for the 50,000 jobs and billion dollars in investment Amazon promised for its new, second home city. In 2017, County Executive Robert P. Astorino announced the county’s bid at a press conference where his written remarks came from an “Amazon Westchester” cardboard package dropped in by a drone seconds earlier.

Real estate professionals viewed the bid more as a “why not” type imitative than a likely opportunity. Many questioned whether Westchester could even accommodate the company’s stated need for 500,000 square feet of modern office space available in 2018 and another 7.5 million square feet within a decade.

Ultimately, the state’s economic development arm, Empire State Development, announced it had split its bids to Amazon into four regions: Buffalo and Rochester; Syracuse, Utica and the Mohawk Valley; Albany; and New York City, Long Island and Mid-Hudson.

In January, the company announced a list of finalists that included the joint bid from New York City, Long Island and the Hudson Valley. The company’s announcement at the time didn’t make it clear whether its plan would actually include New York City’s suburbs, however. Reports now indicate the company will focus its presence in Long Island City, a fast-growing neighborhood in Queens.

Bids from Connecticut economic development officials focused on the Hartford and Stamford regional areas, but neither were selected as finalists.