Amazon announced today that it will not build a second headquarters in New York City.

This is a political victory for Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who opposed the deal, but that victory may be short-lived. Though the campus would not have been in her district, it would have been in Long Island City in a neighboring district. There would have been a large spillover effect of jobs and economic benefit in her own district.

From The Wall Street Journal:

“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,” the company said.

The decision to abandon its new headquarters in Long Island City marks a stunning reversal. Amazon spent a year conducting a public search for a second headquarters, in which hundreds of locations vied for a shot at a promised 50,000 jobs and $5 billion in investment.

Amazon stop its search for another headquarters spot. The company decided to add more more “jobs at its other headquarters location in Northern Virginia, as well as offices in Nashville and other tech hubs around the country.”

Just last week, Ocasio-Cortez celebrated when doubts started to spring up over the development, especially when state Sen. Mike Gianaris won a spot on the “state board that would allow him to veto the development plan.”

Eric Benaim, the CEO of Long Island based brokerage Modern Spaces, told Forbes NYC would make a mistake saying no to Amazon:

“By saying no to Amazon, New York City is essentially saying ‘no’ to any company that would consider coming to the city to do business,” Benaim said. “If we, as a city, reject this deal, we will send the message that New York City is closed for business.

Benaim has been a resident of Long Island City since 2006 and calls himself an “ambassador” for the city.

“If the Amazon deal falls through, it not only effects Long Island City but also New York City as a whole,” Benaim said. “Other businesses won’t be attracted to the area because they will know NYC kicked out the biggest company and rejected the biggest economic impact in the history of the state.”

Real Estate Board of New York President John H. Banks agreed:

And that economic impact would be huge. According to John H. Banks, president of the Real Estate Board of New York, Amazon’s pullout would mean losing out on tax revenues, jobs and overall economic growth across all five boroughs.

“From generating tens of billions in new tax revenue, to creating good-paying jobs, to supporting the real estate market, to making our economy more resilient, this project is absolutely critical for New York,” Banks said. “It’s a once-in-a-generation opportunity to position our city and our economy for the future.”

Losing HQ2 would cost Long Island City and greater New York up to 40,000 jobs. Estimated revenues over the next 25 years from a local Amazon headquarters are estimated at $27.5 billion.


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