Halton Will Soon Find Out if It’ll be Amazon’s New Home
Halton is no stranger to investment, as it’s welcomed a slew of new companies—including some very large ones—over the years.
But Amazon, one of the most coveted companies, has been eyeing Toronto and the overall GTA (which, of course, includes Burlington, Oakville, and Milton) for some time now, and it looks like it’s going to choose its second North American headquarters very soon.
“After more than a year of fanfare, competition and city government prostrations, Amazon’s announcement of its second headquarters location is imminent,” reads a recent Recode article.
While Amazon has yet to reveal its final pick just yet, recent media reports indicate that HQ2 will actually be split between two U.S. cities.
That said, Toronto Mayor John Tory says that, as far he knows, the massive company has not yet decided on a final HQ2 location.
Back in January, Halton—and everyone in Toronto and the GTA—found out that the Toronto region had been identified as one of the top 20 contenders for the massive brand’s second North American headquarters (better known as HQ2).
Toronto submitted a regional bid for HQ2 in 2017, meaning that Amazon could—should it select the region—set up shop in Toronto or its many surrounding cities. In fact, the Toronto region’s bid includes Brampton, Toronto, Mississauga, Durham Region, York Region, and Halton Region.
Toronto is indeed the only Canadian city on the shortlist.
Other cities being considered by Amazon include Boston, New York City, Pittsburgh, Washington, Atlanta, Miami and more.
Amazon said it expects HQ2 to be as big and bustling as its Seattle operation. Last year, the company said it plans on investing over $5 billion in constructing and operating HQ2. The headquarters will also create 50,000 new jobs for its chosen city.
“We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO, in a previous statement. “Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in upfront and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs. We’re excited to find a second home.”
“Full equal” is no joke - HQ1 in Seattle is massive. Amazon’s first headquarters boasts 33 buildings, takes up 8.1 million square feet, houses 24 restaurants and cafes, employs over 40,000 people, and has created 53,000 additional jobs across Seattle as a result of their investments.
Further, Amazon said in an earlier statement that it “estimates its investments in Seattle from 2010 through 2016 resulted in an additional $38 billion to the city’s economy - every dollar invested by Amazon in Seattle generated an additional 1.4 dollars for the city’s economy overall.”
Recode points out that Amazon said it was looking for a city equal to its Seattle headquarters and would preference those “with lots of tech talent, good public transit and attractive tax exemptions.”
Since January, multiple organizations have speculated on HQ2’s future location, with many arguing that a U.S. destination remains more likely than a Canadian one.
But while OddsShark put the Toronto region in last place, the New York Times said it thought the region had a pretty good shot.
Still, the NYT pointed out that Toronto has a few things working against it—namely its skyrocketing real estate prices in both the commercial and residential sectors.
Do you think Amazon will set up shop in Halton?
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