Coverage: Amazon is close to picking its HQ2 location
Amazon.com Inc. has progressed to late-stage talks on its planned second headquarters with a small handful of communities, including northern Virginia’s Crystal City, Dallas and New York City.
Laura Stevens, Scott Calvert and Tawnell D. Hobbs of The Wall Street Journal had the news:
The ongoing talks with some local officials come as discussions appear to have cooled in some of the other 20 cities on Amazon’s shortlist, including Denver, Toronto, Atlanta, Nashville, Tenn., and Raleigh, N.C., according to people familiar with those situations.
Negotiations with the top candidates are likely in slightly different phases, according to the knowledgeable people. In Northern Virginia, Amazon is negotiating with government officials on incentives, while it’s also talking with JBG Smith Properties, a publicly traded real-estate investment trust, about the Crystal City real estate it owns, according to people familiar with the matter. Part of the negotiations involve nailing down the investment targets Amazon would have to meet to qualify for incentives, one of the people said.
New York is still actively talking with Amazon, although it’s unclear how far along they are in the process.
Maria Halkias of The Dallas Morning News reports the company could be looking at a specific location in that city:
Last week’s announcement of a pending $33 million sale of the former Dallas Morning News building at Young and Houston Streets seems to be fueling some of the Dallas speculation.
High-profile developer KDC and partner Hoque Global, who together made a separate pitch for HQ2 on a building site near Dallas City Hall, signed a contract to acquire the downtown property that includes additional compensation if Amazon selects The News’ former headquarters. The News’ parent company disclosed the contract in a regulatory filing.
The News site, along with neighboring property that once housed Reunion Arena, was among dozens of North Texas locations pitched to Amazon.
Jonathan O’Connell and Robert McCartney of The Washington Post report that the Virginia location is likely:
Amazon.com has held advanced discussions about the possibility of opening its highly sought-after second headquarters in Crystal City, including how quickly it would move employees there, which buildings it would occupy and how an announcement about the move would be made to the public, according to people close to the process.
The discussions were more detailed than those the company has had regarding other locations in Northern Virginia and some other cities nationally, adding to speculation that the site in Arlington County is a front-runner to land the online retail giant’s second North American headquarters and its 50,000 jobs.
The company is so close to making its choice that Crystal City’s top real estate developer, JBG Smith, has pulled some of its buildings off the leasing market and officials in the area have discussed how to make an announcement to the public this month, following the midterm elections, according to public and private-sector officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity because Amazon has asked that the selection process remain confidential.