Northern Virginia on Short List for Amazon HQ2

A proposal pitching a Northern Virginia location for Amazon’s planned second headquarters was among 20 that will be further evaluated, the company announced this morning.

The project, Amazon HQ2, will be Amazon’s second headquarters in North America. The company expects to invest more than $5 billion in the campus, which could grow to house as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs. Additionally, Amazon’s direct hiring and investment, construction and ongoing operation of the campus is expected to create tens of thousands of additional jobs and tens of billions of dollars in additional investment in the surrounding community, according to the company.

Thus, nearly every major market in the U.S. submitted proposals—238 in total—to the company last year. And the list of 20 finalists keeps most in play.

Loudoun and Fairfax collaborated with developer Open-Rebees to submit proposal for The Hub property, an 85-acre  undeveloped site straddling the county borders near Dulles Airport. The property, which has been rezoned by the Loudoun Board of Supervisors for development of 3.5 million square feet of office space and 1,300 residential units. That project  is adjacent to the Center for Innovative Technology, which was developed three decades ago during Gov. Chuck Robb’s administration and which the government has identified for sale. A Silver Line rail station is under construction at that location.

Local leaders said today that plan appeared to be under consideration.

“This is a great example of how regional cooperation can tell a powerful story,” said Loudoun County Chairwoman Phyllis J. Randall (D-At Large). “The partnership between Loudoun and Fairfax County on a metro-accessible site highlights our commitment to provide the best solution where Amazon and their employees can live, work, learn and play.”

Loudoun leaders have worked with the state government and other Northern Virginia jurisdictions to assemble a proposal package.

“The site Amazon is considering is near Loudoun’s Data Center Alley—the largest and fastest-growing data center market in the world,” stated executive director of Loudoun Economic Development Buddy Rizer. “It will be more than fitting for an international e-commerce corporation of Amazon’s stature to locate its second headquarters here.”

“We are very excited that Northern Virginia is included on the short list as a potential location for Amazon’s second headquarters,” said Sharon Bulova, chairman of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. “Fairfax and Loudoun counties are able to offer a great quality of life coupled with an innovative and business friendly culture for future Amazon corporate neighbors and employees. With our highly educated and talented workforce and a location close to Dulles International Airport and a new Silver Line train station, we hope we will have the opportunity to welcome Amazon HQ2 to Virginia.”

Proposals from Washington, DC, and Montgomery County, MD, also are on the list of 20 finalists.

Others on the short list are: Atlanta, Austin, Boston, Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Miami, Nashville, Newark, New York, Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, and Toronto.

Also today, Apple announced plans to hire 20,000 more workers and establish another campus in the U.S., although there were few details. “The company plans to establish an Apple campus in a new location, which will initially house technical support for customers. The location of this new facility will be announced later in the year,” according to a statement on the company’s website.

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