More than two dozen cities are vying to be the home of Amazon's second world headquarters as the e-commerce giant is one month into its search for where to put its "HQ2".
As those cities are currently putting together their best pitch to land the $5+ billion project that would result in an estimated 50,000 jobs, they are coming up with some peculiar enticements for Amazon. The city of Tuscon, AZ sent Amazon a 21-foot cactus, which the company rejected and donated to a museum. Three massive Amazon delivery boxes have been erected in downtown Birmingham, AL, and more boxes are planned.
An Atlanta suburb is taking it a step further — vowing to rename itself as Amazon if the company selects it for HQ2. Stonecrest, GA — which officially became a city in January and is located about 20 miles east of Atlanta — voted earlier this past Monday to de-annex 345 acres of its land if Amazon selects it, with that land to be named the city of Amazon.
“There are several major U.S. cities that want Amazon, but none has the branding opportunity we are now offering this visionary company,” Stonecrest Mayor Jason Lary told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “How could you not want your 21st century headquarters to be located in a city named Amazon?”
Though Stoncrest's population of 53,000 doesn't fit Amazon's HQ2 criteria of at least one million people, its close proximity to Atlanta certainly does. Atlanta is considered one of the more favorable cities that could end up on Amazon's short list. "What we're offering [Amazon] is the ability to control their brand and their city forever."
In its search announcement on Sept. 7, Amazon said it has a preference for:
- A 175-acre site located near an international airport
- Metropolitan areas with more than one million people
- A stable and business-friendly environment
- Urban or suburban locations with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent
- Communities that think big and creatively when considering locations and real estate options
HQ2 could be, but does not have to be:
- An urban or downtown campus
- A similar layout to Amazon’s Seattle campus
- A development-prepped site.
Here is WSBTV Atlanta's Monday evening report on Atlanta trying to land Amazon: