Economy

Toronto may have lost out to Washington area for Amazon's HQ2

Toronto may have lost out to Washington area for Amazon's HQ2”

The Washington Post reported yesterday that Crystal City, Va., is in "advanced discussions" with Amazon, citing anonymous public and private sector officials.

According to The Washington Post, Amazon is looking specifically at Crystal City, with talks including which buildings it would take and how quickly it could move employees there.

But after publication of the Post story, Mike Grella, director of economic development for Amazon, posted on Twitter: "Memo to the genius leaking info about Crystal City, VA as #HQ2 selection".

Because Amazon is reportedly in "advanced talks" does not mean the deal is certain.

At a conference in NY on Thursday, CEO Jeff Bezos - who said in October that Amazon will decide before the end of the year where HQ2 will be - told attendees the decision would ultimately be based on his intuition.

Two people close to the process said that if Crystal City was selected, Amazon was likely to move an initial group of several hundred employees into 1851 South Bell Street or 1770 Crystal Drive. City and state lawmakers nationwide created economic incentives in a bid to attract Amazon's second headquarters, that would bring in 50,000 jobs and $5 billion in investment.

In earlier tweets, Grella criticized another story in the Post - owned by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos - for speculating about the possible second headquarters location based on flight patterns of Bezos' jet. The e-commerce giant has said it will announce the location by the end of 2018. The Triangle is one of 20 finalists that also include Austin, Atlanta and Nashville. "And stop treating the NDA you signed like a used napkin". Amazon executives did not return to Boston for a second site visit this fall - though Bezos was spotted dining in Kendall Square last weekend.

Spokesmen for Amazon declined to comment to the newspaper, as did Arlington County Board Chair Katie Cristol.



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