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It’s Raining Amazon Investment—NYC Fulfillment Center & the Hunt for HQ2

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Amazon Fulfillment on the Staten Island Shore

Earlier this week, Amazon confirmed it will be opening a major fulfillment center in New York City. The $100-million facility will be one of four buildings that are planned for the Matrix Global Logistics Park, which is being developed by Matrix Development Group on the western shore of Staten Island.

The site was previously courted by NASCAR to build a new racetrack, but community opposition buried that project in 2006. “That fleeting nightmare is long since dead,” Staten Island Borough President James Oddo stated. “What will rise, and what is literally rising at the Matrix site, are thousands of jobs. Staten Island will be better for it,” he added.

According to the New York Post, Amazon will receive $18 million in performance-based tax credits through the state’s Excelsior Jobs Program, provided the online retailer keeps the 880+ existing N.Y. jobs, as well as providing the estimated 2,250 new full-time jobs over five years. The nearly 1-million-square-foot state-of-the-art fulfillment center is slated to open in 2018, at which time it will be partly staffed by robots. Advanced robotics machinery will assist the human staff with order pick-ups and storage, which should reduce physical strain on employees, as well as increasing operating efficiency, by cutting down on time spent traveling up and down the aisles to retrieve or store items.

The Bid for Amazon HQ2

On the heels of confirming its new Staten Island digs, Amazon kicked off the nationwide search for the perfect location to build its second North American headquarters. Already dubbed HQ2, Amazon’s second home is expected to be fully equal to the company’s Seattle locationan 8.1-million square feet, 33-building campus, complete with 30+ restaurants, cafes and other services, which cater to its 40,000+ employees. Between 2010 and 2016, the company’s investment in Seattle reportedly generated an additional $38 billion for the city’s economy.

207 Boren Ave N, Seattle (courtesy of Yardi Matrix)

Amazon estimates an investment of over $5 billion in the construction of its second headquarters, as well as growth that will include as many as 50,000 high-paying jobs. Moreover, HQ2 is expected to bring tens of thousands of additional jobs and billions of dollars in further investment in the surrounding community.

The request for proposals states that Amazon is looking for a roomy spot in a metropolitan area exceeding 1 million in population, with a stable and business-friendly environment, and open and creatively-minded communities with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent. The ideal site would be within 30 miles of the population center and within 45 minutes of an international airport. And, while the second base of operations could resemble Amazon’s Seattle headquarters, the RFP encourages proponents to get creative in real estate development sites, as well as incentives, both factors of great significance to the final decision.

Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos stated “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.

And, while offers are already pouring in, online opinion polls have also opened:

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