"Bringing Amazon to New York diversified our economy away from real estate and Wall Street, further cementing our status as an emerging center for tech and was an extraordinary economic win not just for Queens and New York City, but for the entire region, from Long Island to Albany's nanotech center".
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. As a practical matter, that means calling off just one agreement, in MS, though two years ago the Trump Organization said it had as many as 30 potential deals in the pipeline. But instead of reopening what was a year-long search for a second headquarters, Amazon said it will proceed with plans for other major offices at a site in Northern Virginia and Nashville. The company has said it will not build a new headquarters in NY.
Shares of Amazon were down 0.3 per cent after the announcement.
The Seattle-based Amazon had planned to bring 25,000 jobs to NY, and spend $US2.5 billion ($NZ3.6b) building its offices.
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Amazon has said it will not build a new headquarters in NY, citing fierce opposition from state and local politicians.
Others like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the progressive freshman Congresswoman from NY, hailed Amazon's withdrawal as a victory for members of the community who protested the deal in recent months. Last week, she was impressed with how effectively people organized against the "creeping overreach of one of the world's biggest corporations".
Responding to a growing backlash, Amazon is officially abandoning its plans to build a new base of operations in NY. Community groups feared rising rents in the neighborhood would push out long-time residents, and that the influx of workers would strain an already overburdened subway system.
On the other hand, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo was on board with the deal. He doesn't know of the poll that Amazon cites in its statement, but he wouldn't be surprised if the 70 percent support statistic is accurate.
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But critics nearly immediately objected to the massive subsidies that NY offered to lure the tech behemoth. The company's existing New York-based operations in Brooklyn, Manhattan and Staten Island - which collectively employ 5,000 people - will not be impacted, or could even expand a little over time, Seth said.
On Thursday, Amazon blamed officials for torpedoing its plans.
Amazon said Thursday it does not plan to look for another location at this time, and will continue with plans to build offices in Arlington, Virginia, and Nashville, Tennessee. The company has defended its practices and previous year raised its minimum wage to $15 an hour, more than twice the federally mandated level. The online retailer had not yet acquired any land for the project, which would make it easy to scrap its plans.
Chicago, Miami, and Newark are among the other eliminated finalists that want another chance at being home to HQ2 - creating an estimated 25,000 jobs.
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NY officials who differed from de Blasio and Cuomo in their assessment of the Amazon situation felt it would be problematic to devote resources to employees making an average of $150,000 a year when the city faces other issues.