Typically, when we hear a news announcement about the hunt for a city as a major event is approaching, it has to do with sports: The Summer/Winter Olympics, the Super Bowl, the World Cup. This week, though, it is not a national or international athletics association looking for the best city, but rather a tech firm.
That said, it still a pretty big deal.
This week, the Seattle-based online retailer announced it is considering about 12 different US metro areas in which to open a new headquarters in Amazon’s new “HQ2 project.”
In a statement made this week, Amazon Chief Executive Jeff Bezos noes, “We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters. Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in up-front and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs. We’re excited to find a second home.”
While the company is not hinting at where that contract might just land, it has divulged a little about what it will require of that city.
- In or near a metro area with more than a million people (because that attracts the best talent)
- Within 45 minutes of an international airport
- Direct access to mass transit
- Flexibility to eventually expand to a size similar to the original Seattle headquarters
On its website, the company states: “We want to find a city that is excited to work with us and where our customers, employees, and the community can all benefit,” in regards to this very public process. In addition, company says “a highly educated labor pool is critical and a strong university system is required [because] We want to invest in a community where our employees will enjoy living, recreational opportunities, educational opportunities, and an overall high quality of life.”
Effectively, then, the new facility would need to (eventually) include 33 buildings and 24 restaurants that take up more than 8 million square feet of space and employ about 40,000 people. But Amazon has already said that it plans to hire 50,000 new employees over the next 15 years for this new facility, alone, who will earn, on average, $100,000 per year.