Amazon leases office space in Hudson Yards
Less than a year after Amazon dropped plans to build its second headquarters in Long Island City, the tech giant has officially signed a lease for office space in Hudson Yards, as the Wall Street Journal first reported. The Seattle-based company will expand its presence in Manhattan with 335,000 square feet of office space at 410 Tenth Avenue. There are currently about 3,500 employees in the company’s existing NYC offices and this latest expansion will bring 1,500 new jobs to the city—all without any incentives.
“It’s clear the main reason Amazon wanted to be here was the availability of a skilled tech workforce plus the synergy with related industries,” James Parrott, an economist at the New School, told the Journal. “And New York City still retains that attraction.”
Amazon’s plans to bring a $2.5 billion campus to Long Island City were projected to bring 25,000 new jobs, but keep in mind that number reflected a 15 year period. The state and city offered $2.8 billion in incentives—including $1.5 billion in tax breaks and grants and a helipad—in a competitive bidding war with 200 other cities. The deal fell apart in the face of backlash from local politicians and activists.
“Amazon is coming to New York, just as they always planned,” New York state senator Michael Gianaris said in a statement. “Fortunately, we dodged a $3 billion bullet by not agreeing to their subsidy shakedown earlier this year.”
Governor Cuomo—who was vocal against the original deal’s critics—emphasized that the new move isn’t providing any benefits for Long Island City. “This is crumbs from the table compared to a feast,” he said. “We don’t have a problem bringing businesses to Manhattan but we have been trying for decades to get that Queens waterfront developed.”
Last Friday, social media giant Facebook also announced plans to expand its NYC footprint. The company is close to inking a deal for 700,000 square feet at the former James A. Farley Post Office, a landmark in Midtown currently being converted into a mixed-use building. Apple is also reportedly scoping out the former post office and Google is currently building a huge campus across three buildings in Hudson Square. These deals signal the growth of the tech sector in New York City, particularly on Manhattan’s West Side.
Amazon is expecting to open its new Hudson Yards offices in 2021.
[Via Wall Street Journal]
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