GE Picks A Pretty Good Day To Announce It Won't Continue With Phase 2 Of Its New Boston HQ
Add General Electric to the list of large companies breaking the hearts of major cities on Valentine's Day.
Hours after Amazon announced it was ditching plans for the New York City component of HQ2, GE confirmed a long-speculated rumor Thursday that it will not move ahead with a 12-story second phase of its Boston headquarters. The company remains committed to Boston, albeit in a smaller fashion, The Boston Globe reports.
“While changes in the company’s portfolio and operating model will lead to a smaller corporate headquarters, we are fully committed to Boston and proud to call it home,” GE said in a statement to Reuters.
GE announced in 2016 it was moving 800 jobs from its longtime headquarters in Fairfield, Connecticut, to Boston, where it planned a $200M development along Fort Point Channel.
At the May 2017 groundbreaking of the company’s new home, GE Vice President of Operations Ann Klee said it “isn’t going to be your grandmother’s headquarters.” Three months later, the tower component was delayed amid an effort to cut costs at the company. GE has since shed assets and changed CEOs in an effort to return profits to the onetime blue chip company.
Boston’s real estate community for months has wondered if the company would ever begin the second phase of the headquarters, especially as GE has sold off assets and indicated its corporate culture has shifted away from a flashy C-suite.
Work is almost done on renovations to two warehouses, formerly home to the New England Confectionery Co., totaling 95K SF. The company’s announcement indicates its global headquarters will employ 250 at just the renovated space, which GE will sell and lease back to pay back $87M in tax incentives it received from Massachusetts. It will also sell off the land reserved for the tower to pay back the state.