The long wait to find out where Amazon will build its second headquarters appears likely to have a twist ending: HQ2 is coming to two places.
One of those places, according to a New York Times article published Monday night, is expected to be Crystal City.
Citing “people familiar with the decision-making process,” the paper says Amazon is “is nearing a deal” to build large new office campuses in Crystal City and Long Island City, in the New York City borough of Queens.
Earlier today the Wall Street Journal broke the news that HQ2 would be split “to allow [Amazon] to recruit more of the best tech talent.”
“Under the new plan, Amazon would split the workforce with about 25,000 employees in each place,” the Journal reported. It’s unclear what that new plan means for any economic incentives that localities like Arlington were offering the company.
Echoing ARLnow.com’s reporting in November 2017, the Journal said the Amazon was indeed attracted to Crystal City’s central location, transportation options, urban amenities and available real estate.
Northern Virginia’s Crystal City, a neighborhood in Arlington County, appears to be a front-runner to take one of the two final positions, according to people familiar with the matter. In Northern Virginia, Amazon is already negotiating with government officials on incentives, while it is also talking with JBG Smith Properties , a real-estate investment trust, about the Crystal City real estate it owns. Part of the negotiations there involve nailing down the investment targets Amazon would have to meet to qualify for incentives, one of the people said.
Crystal City, just across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., has an urban feel, numerous government offices and a ready-to-go campus with empty, older office space. The area has good access to tech talent and transportation, two factors that rank high on Amazon’s wish list.
The New York Times, meanwhile, reported tonight that local residents have received telephone surveys asking about Amazon coming to the area.
Jay Brodsky, who lives in Arlington, Va., said about a week ago that his wife took part in a 45-minute phone survey about her opinion if Amazon moved to the area. “It was everything from, ‘What do you think about the local government,’ to ‘Are you concerned about traffic?'” he said. She received an Amazon gift card for participating.