We have made the decision, after much consideration and deliberation, to abandon our plans to erect an Amazon Corporate Office New York headquarters in Long Island City, Queens. Amazon needs long-lasting, cooperative partnerships with state and local elected authorities in order to fulfill its commitment to construct a new headquarters. A number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to develop the kinds of relationships needed to move forward with the project we and many others had envisioned for Long Island City, despite polls showing that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment.
We regret coming to this conclusion because we adore New York, its unparalleled vitality, people, and culture—and in especially the neighborhood of Long Island City, where we came to know so many upbeat, forward-thinking local officials, entrepreneurs, and people. In Brooklyn, Manhattan, and Staten Island, there are presently more than 5,000 Amazon employees, and we intend to keep expanding these teams.
We are sincerely appreciative to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, and their staff for their kind invitation to construct in New York City and for their assistance throughout the process. We can’t say enough good things about the relentless work that Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have done on behalf of Amazon Corporate Office New York to promote local investment and job growth. These leaders’ unwavering passion and commitment to the communities they stand for have been an inspiration.
One of the main reasons our decision was so challenging is that they have been with us from the beginning.
At this time, we have no plans to renew the HQ2 search. We will carry out our planned activities in Nashville and Northern Virginia, and we will keep expanding and hiring in our 17 corporate offices and tech centers in the United States and Canada.
Once more, thank you to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio, and several other local authorities and citizens who backed us throughout the process and embraced our intentions. As we continue to establish our footprint in Amazon Corporate Office New York over time, we expect to have additional opportunities to work together.
Long Island City, New York City, Amazon
- Long Island City is a mixed-use neighborhood where business and the arts coexist and is situated directly over the East River from Midtown Manhattan and the Upper East Side. It is a diversified neighborhood with a special mix of academic institutions, small and major tech sectors, industrial firms, new and renovated residences, restaurants, bars, breweries, waterfront parks, hotels, and cultural institutions. With 8 subway lines, 13 bus lines, commuter rail, a bike-sharing program, and ferries serving the neighborhood, Long Island City offers some of New York City’s best transit accessibility. LaGuardia and JFK airports are also nearby.
- New York and Long Island City will gain from Amazon’s new headquarters. 4 million square feet of energy-efficient office space with the potential to grow to 8 million square feet, more than 25,000 full-time, high-paying jobs, approximately $2.5 billion in Amazon investment, and an estimated additional tax revenue of more than $10 billion over the next 20 years as a result of the investment and job creation.
- Amazon will get $1.525 billion in performance-based direct incentives if it can create 25,000 new employees in Long Island City. Included in this are a $325 million cash grant from Empire State Development based on the size of buildings that will be occupied over the next ten years, as well as a refundable tax credit through New York State’s Excelsior Program of up to $1.2 billion. This credit is calculated as a percentage of the salaries that Amazon anticipates paying employees over the next ten years, or $48,000 per job for 25,000 jobs with an average wage of over $150,000. Over the next ten years, Amazon will be awarded these incentives based on the additional employment it adds each year and as it meets building occupancy goals.
- The neighborhood will gain from New York City’s provision of financing through a Payment In Lieu Of Tax (PILOT) program based on Amazon’s property taxes on a section of the construction site to finance community infrastructure upgrades created with input from locals during the design phase. Amazon has promised to offer space on its campus for a tech startup incubator for use by artists and industrial firms, and Amazon will donate a spot for a new primary or intermediary public school. Additionally, the corporation will spend money creating new parks and enhancing the infrastructure.