If New York City wants any pull in this competition, it needs to remember its forgotten borough — Staten Island.
Let’s face it, the 8.1 million square feet Amazon needs (roughly the size of its Seattle headquarters) is nowhere to be found in Manhattan. It would also be unnecessarily difficult to clinch a real estate deal of that size in Brooklyn, Queens or the Bronx.
Consider Staten Island, where Amazon has already set up shop.
According to the New York Post, the e-commerce giant cut a shrewd deal on the island’s west coast — the same location that was being eyed for an 82,500-seat NASCAR racetrack.
Those plans were nixed, and it’s a good thing they were. The sport of corporate America — because it offers so many places to plaster advertising slogans — doesn’t even report race attendance because admission revenue continues to shrink.
There you you have it. Amazon’s already taking over a group of warehouses being built by Matrix Development Group., expected to bring in 3,000 employees.
Also, Amazon loves New York. Last year, the company purchased a 161,400-square-foot distribution hub for food in Bethpage, Long Island. That makes sense, considering it just took over Whole Foods.
In December 2014, Amazon opened a 40,000-square-foot “Prime Now” hub at 7 W. 34th St. in Manhattan. A year later, it debuted another one in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park.
Staten Island, however, has an underused corporate park nestled in that sweet spot that’s convenient to N.Y.C., New Jersey and all surrounding airports.
Staten Island also needs the reputation bump. Too often New Yorkers scoff at the “parking lot” between Manhattan and New Jersey. An Amazon headquarters could give Richmond County — currently devoid of any real industry or manufacturing — a unique identity.
The development could cost as much as $5 billion to build and run ( h/t the New York Times). It would also bring in more than 50,000 employees.
“We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters,” Bezos, Amazon’s chief executive, said in a prepared statement. “Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in upfront and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs. We’re excited to find a second home.”
This Staten Island native is excited to see his hometown jockey for position.
Amazon would eventually require 8 msf of space for their 2nd HQ. If they do select NYC, it is my hope they could take on a whole brand new 2 msf tower to anchor and set up the rest of their shop in SI or Brooklyn etc near by.