According to the Wall Street Journal, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is possibly reconsidering its headquarter expansion into it New York City after facing local opposition, first reported by the Washington Post.
Local and government officials who once supported Amazon’s new location are now concerned over that it may abandon its plan to bring 25,000 jobs to Long Island City and a USD 2.5 Billion investment, according to an official.
If Amazon were to abandon its new location in New York City, it would reverse the bidding competition that took over a year. The competition also included more than 200 cities across the country. Amazon ultimately decided to split its new campus into two, as one would go to New York and the other would go to Amazon’s Chief Executive Officer Jeff Bezos’ hometown region in Virginia.
According to sources, Amazon executives are deliberating whether to delay some of the initial phase of investments to get the project started. The internal talks haven’t progressed to deciding whether to relocate future jobs or the campus, the source stated.
Amazon also faced opposition after last week’s nomination of New York state Senator Mike Gianaris, who is a vocal opposer of the deal, to a state board that would allow to veto the development plan, sources familiar with the matter said. Gianaris would bee approval for the post by Governor Andrew Cuomo.
Locals have opposed that idea of Amazon’s campus in Long Island City due to the nature of the project. Many have questioned Amazon’s impact to transportation, neighborhood gentrification, and Amazon’s opposition to unionize.
Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio have both agreed on offering Amazon with up to USD 3 Billion in state and city tax incentives. Cuomo reiterated his support for Amazon’s launch in New York as he warned that local opponents could derail the project.
Amazon said in a statement that it is working hard to demonstrate it could be a good neighbor, adding incentives such as computer-science classes and workforce training.
Amazon executives have been required by New York City Council to testify at two hearings on the proposed campus. Legislators used the hearings from the first one to express their concerns about the project. Another hearing is scheduled for February 27th.