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NYC Pushing Long Island City, World Trade Center As Top Amazon HQ2 Locations

NYC Pushing Long Island City, World Trade Center As Top Amazon HQ2 Locations
One Court Square in Long Island City, Queens

Despite its high office rents and cost of living, New York developers and officials believe they have what it takes to lure Amazon HQ2, and they might have narrowed down the field of possible locations.

Although leaders from the 23 neighborhoods submitted advocated for their respective areas, a few spots have risen to the top due to the necessary combination of available office space, transit connectivity and desirability for talented workers, Crain's New York Business reports.

Long Island City could be the top pick for New York's proposal to Amazon, and a coalition of leaders from RXR Realty, Tishman Speyer, Savanna and others have put together a package of office space that could suit the e-commerce giant's needs. Tishman Speyer's under-construction development The JACX and Savanna's One Court Square, the tallest office tower in Long Island City, would lead the package.

LIC's proximity to Manhattan, and to Cornell Tech's campus on Roosevelt Island, are crucial points in the neighborhood's favor, as is the diversity of office stock and the potential rent savings that could result.

The World Trade Center alone has enough availability to suit Amazon, if one includes towers 2 and 5, yet to be developed. In the heart of the Financial District, it would be more expensive than LIC, but a series of crucial as-of-right tax incentives would save up to $10 per SF of rent, according to Crain's. Nowhere else in the city can match the neighborhood's transit connectivity.

Though Brooklyn commercial leaders have put forth a "Brooklyn Prime" campaign centered around potential locations in the Navy Yard's Dock 72, 25 Kent Ave. and Industry City, Crain's slots the borough's potential as third-best, due to its deficits in transit connectivity and possible challenges in uniting enough space close together to form a true campus.

Crain's also notes Vornado's group of properties near Penn Station, Hudson Yards, Governor's Island and the Bronx as less likely landing spots for HQ2. If Amazon picks New York, it would be projected to become the city's largest employer, which would have an unprecedented impact on the area, no matter which neighborhood it chooses.