Amazon won't build HQ2 in New York

Amazon logo after Amazon HQ2 leaving New York Source: Bloomberg

Amazon has decided not to build one of its HQ2 headquarters in New York. The e-commerce company reportedly changed course about locating its new location there after mounting protests led by New York Congresswoman, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

Why is Amazon HQ2 leaving New York?

There were already reports that the corporation was hesitant to have its HQ2 in the area of Long Island City, New York. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez and other critics said that the Amazon headquarters would cause rent increases in the surrounding neighborhoods, push out local businesses, and give low-wage jobs to any workers hired by the company. In the wake of the growing protests by local residents, Amazon released a statement cancelling plans for the new location.

‘After much thought and deliberation, we’ve decided not to move forward with our plans to build a headquarters for Amazon in Long Island City, Queens. For Amazon, the commitment to build a new headquarters requires positive, collaborative relationships with state and local elected officials who will be supportive over the long-term,' said Amazon.

'While polls show that 70% of New Yorkers support our plans and investment, a number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build the type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many others envisioned in Long Island City,' added Amazon.

Ocasio-Cortez responded on Twitter to Amazon's decision.

'Anything is possible. Today was the day a group of dedicated, everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon's corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world,' tweeted Ocasio-Cortez.

New York State Senator, Michael Gianaris, was a main opponent of Amazon HQ2 in Long Island City. He said that Amazon’s unwillingness to come to New York shows that it wasn’t really committed to the area.

‘Like a petulant child, Amazon insists on getting its way or takes its ball and leaves. The only thing that happened here is that a community that was going to be profoundly affected by their presence started asking questions,’ said Gianaris.

What will happen next for Amazon HQ2?

In its statement, Amazon said that it will only have two HQ2 locations in Arlington, Virginia and Nashville, Tennessee. The company won't re-open a search for a new headquarters.

‘We do not intend to re-open the HQ2 search at this time. We will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the US and Canada,' noted Amazon in its statement.

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