Amazon releases finalist cities for second headquarters

FILE - In this June 16, 2014 file photo, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos walks on stage for the launch of the new Amazon Fire Phone, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren, File)

NEW YORK (AP/WTNH) — Amazon is narrowing the list of cities under consideration for its second headquarters to 20, with the largest concentration in the Northeast.

Amazon, based in Seattle, plans to invest $5 billion in the new headquarters and could employ as many as 50,000 people in and around the city it chooses.

Related Content: Waterbury submits bid for Amazon’s second headquarters

Cities are in fierce competition to lure Amazon, which has revolutionized the way people shop.

Related Content: Malloy prefers Stamford or Hartford for Amazon headquarters

The list released on Thursday includes the cities of Atlanta, Austin, Texas, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Indianapolis, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, Philadelphia, Toronto, Washington, Pittsburgh, Raleigh, North Carolina; Nashville, Tennessee; Newark, New Jersey; Columbus, Ohio. It also listed northern Virginia and Montgomery County in Maryland as potential sites.

Related Content: Danbury mayor vying for Amazon’s attention

Midday Thursday, Connecticut Governor Dannel Malloy issued the following statement in reaction to Amazon’s announcement:

While it’s certainly disappointing that Amazon didn’t choose Connecticut as a potential future site for its HQ2 proposal, we remain committed to working with business leaders throughout the world and right here at home to grow jobs in our state.  We received positive feedback from Amazon officials, but at the end of the day did not have a large enough metropolitan area for this particular proposal.  Connecticut remains a tremendous place to do business, as demonstrated by CVS/Aetna’s recent commitment to Hartford and by the countless companies both large and small who are proud to call Connecticut home.  We will continue to highlight our tremendous strengths, while recognizing the need to focus on investing in our cities to maintain the progress we have made in making Connecticut a more attractive place to live and work.  That includes fixing our transportation system – one of the top concerns for businesses looking to move to our state.”

Connecticut Community Development Commissioner Catherine Smith said that while she was disappointed with the news, it was a worthwhile exercise to promote why businesses should consider Connecticut for development.

Of course we are disappointed Connecticut was not chosen for Amazon’s HQ2.  We knew from the beginning that this was an uphill climb and that scale could be an issue, so it is not surprising that Amazon opted for much larger communities.  When I spoke to Holly Sullivan from Amazon, she indicated our proposal was very strong, however the data-driven selection process that was used favored larger metropolitan areas.  Overall, this exercise has proven to be beneficial as we continue to promote the many assets of Connecticut and compete for businesses across the globe.”

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