The Amazon HQ2 deal that promised 25,000 jobs and $3 billion in state and city incentives for Long Island City (LIC), N.Y., quickly lost steam when it faced local opposition. Lawmakers raised concerns against the subsidies the city had promised Amazon and feared that the city’s current infrastructure would not be able to support the incoming growth. On Feb. 14, Amazon pulled out of the deal—and some real estate professionals have been vocal about their disappointment.
According to Forbes, Rebekah Witzke, marketing manager for Modern Spaces in LIC, began a petition to show her support for HQ2 when hearing about the reversal. It has garnered over 3,500 signatures and was passed around by major real estate influencers, such as the Real Estate Board of New York and Douglas Elliman.
Amazon’s second headquarters in LIC was predicted to be a major boost to the local economy with a direct impact on the neighboring housing markets. There were, however, concerns surrounding housing affordability.
According to the New York Times, Amazon released the following statement:
“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. While polls show that 70 percent 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.
“We are disappointed to have reached this conclusion—we love New York, its incomparable dynamism, people, and culture, and particularly the community of Long Island City, where we have gotten to know so many optimistic, forward-leaning community leaders, small business owners and residents. There are currently over 5,000 Amazon employees in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island, and we plan to continue growing these teams.
“We are deeply grateful to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio and their staffs, who so enthusiastically and graciously invited us to build in New York City and supported us during the process. Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio have worked tirelessly on behalf of New Yorkers to encourage local investment and job creation, and we can’t speak positively enough about all their efforts. The steadfast commitment and dedication that these leaders have demonstrated to the communities they represent inspired us from the very beginning and is one of the big reasons our decision was so difficult.
“We do not intend to re-open the HQ2 search at this time. We will proceed as planned in Northern Virginia and Nashville, and we will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the U.S. and Canada.
Thank you again to Governor Cuomo, Mayor de Blasio and the many other community leaders and residents who welcomed our plans and supported us along the way. We hope to have future chances to collaborate as we continue to build our presence in New York over time.”
Liz Dominguez is RISMedia’s associate content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at firstname.lastname@example.org.