By Missy Schrott | [email protected]
Amazon announced its break up with Long Island City, Queens on Valentine’s Day last week, causing Northern Virginians to wonder: What does this mean for us?
Amazon pulled out of the New York deal after experiencing protests from local politicians and officials.
“A number of state and local politicians have made it clear that they oppose our presence and will not work with us to build to type of relationships that are required to go forward with the project we and many other envisioned in Long Island City,” Amazon said in a post on its blog on Feb. 14.
Despite the New York fallout, Northern Virginia officials have made it clear that Amazon’s National Landing headquarters in Arlington and Alexandria is still on track.
“After speaking with an Amazon representative earlier today, we have confirmed that we are moving forward as planned with Amazon’s upcoming headquarters in Arlington – nothing has changed,” Arlington County Board Chair Christian Dorsey said in a statement on Feb. 14.
In the blog post, Amazon said it has no plans to reopen the search for an additional headquarters: “We do not intend to reopen the HQ2 search at this time. We will proceed as planned in Northern Virginia and Nashville, and we will continue to hire and grow across our 17 corporate offices and tech hubs in the U.S. and Canada.”
Amazon has plans for a new 5,000-job Operations Center of Excellence in Nashville.
Cara O’Donnell, director of public relations for Arlington Economic Development, did not say whether National Landing could end up absorbing any of the 25,000 jobs that were expected to go to New York. Instead, she said Arlington is keeping with the terms of its original proposal.
Amazon’s first announcement that it would split its headquarters between New York and Virginia said it would also split 50,000 new jobs, 25,000 in each location. The original Northern Virginia proposal that O’Donnell referenced, however, allows for up to 37,850 jobs in 20 years.
When asked whether the construction in Northern Virginia would be expedited with the cancellation of the New York headquarters, O’Donnell said it would be continuing on its current path at this time.