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Will Atlanta Be Amazon’s New Home?

Emma Harding, Staff Writer

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  Amazon, the major corporation that seems to run the world, has announced its decision to expand its headquarters. When the news dropped, cities around the country scrambled to find out more about where the new $5 million Amazon headquarters are going to be located.

With over 230 potential locations vying to be the company’s new home, its hard to figure out which one Amazon will choose. Not only will the new headquarters bring quite a bit of fame to the the chosen city, but will also provide nearly 50,000 jobs to those in the city of its choosing.

 Though Amazon has not made a final decision, and most likely won’t for a few months, they have narrowed down the top 20 most desirable cities, surprisingly with most being located on the East coast. It’s not certain which city is number one, but the list still gives outsiders a glance at what Amazon has in mind. With major cities like Chicago, New York, Washington D.C., and Atlanta it’s clear Amazon has plans for their second headquarters to be BIG.

There are a few conditions that Amazon must check off before choosing the new location of the second headquarters. Amazon has made it clear that they’d prefer to be near a metropolitan area with over 1 million people, will need direct access to mass transit, must be within 45 minutes of an international airport, and have a great availability of technological talent.

Atlanta checks off all of the requirements perfectly. Not only does Atlanta have more available space for growth at an affordable price, but it easily checks off having a metropolitan population over 1 million and with major interstates such as 285 and I-85 running through downtown, as well as Atlanta’s own transportation infrastructure, MARTA, providing transportation to most of the metropolitan area, makes Atlanta a top contender for Amazon’s new headquarters.

The distance between Atlanta and Hartsfield-Jackson International airport is ideal as well, seeing that it’s only a 20 minute drive. Additionally, the growth of technology in Atlanta is incredible. With Georgia Tech providing a large number of students who have been exposed to the latest and greatest technology and the push for a more “Connected Atlanta” with a goal of Wifi available city-wide, Amazon would fit in perfectly with the culture that Atlanta has.

Though many people immerse themselves into the buzz of the Amazon headquarter news, some see the other side to the argument. In an interview with Joseph Parina, Brookings Institution, on CBS, he brings up the point that wherever Amazon decides to move to, they will bring many well-paid people. This increase in wealth would “bring up the price of housing and make the region more unaffordable.” This would cause a worse hassle for those who don’t work for Amazon than what they get in return.

The other side to this argument is the people who support whatever decision Amazon makes no matter the effects. People around the country  have stated in interviews that they are excited for the increased number in jobs that will become available while others are just excited that the supposed “World’s most Innovative” company would inserting themselves into their city.

Governor of Georgia, Nathan Deal, has stated that they made quite a “Strong, competitive offer” when Amazon made its first announcement of expansion. Though information of the offer has not been shown to the public, Governor Deal confirms that there is nothing to worry about at this time. With the 2018 Georgia Legislative Session in order, Deal doesn’t want the focus to primarily be on Amazon but rather the opportunities available to improve Georgia’s educational systems, health & safety of children, and investment more in Georgia large transportation system.

For those who are still worrying about what Georgia will do about the Amazon situation, Governor Deal assures that he will call a special legislative session ONLY if Georgia is ranked top 3 on Amazon’s list. The session will consist of discussing more special incentives that Georgia will offer to Amazon.

As time progresses, potential cities for Amazon’s second headquarters are becoming more antsy, wanting any clue to when Amazon will make an announcement regarding who they have chosen, which may not even be released until next year sometime.

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Will Atlanta Be Amazon’s New Home?