Amazon announces new headquarters; Grapevine's proposal not chosen

Amazon selected New York City and Arlington, Virginia, for its second headquarters.

Amazon selected New York City and Arlington, Virginia, for its second headquarters.

Amazon Inc. has chosen New York City and Arlington, Va., to accommodate its new headquarters—investing $5 billion and creating more than 50,000 jobs across both locations, according to a Tuesday news release from the company. Amazon also announced it will establish a business operations center in Nashville, Tenn., which is expected to create another 5,000-plus jobs.

The major online retailer announced the search for its second headquarters in September 2017 and asked cities to team up to submit one proposal per Metropolitan Statistical Area.

The Dallas Regional Chamber partnered with the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce in October 2017 to collect a list of sites to present to Amazon, according to a Dallas Regional Chamber news release. Amazon received 238 proposals across the country.

Among the cities originally vying for the new Amazon headquarters included the city of Grapevine.

The proposed site offered to Amazon included more than 800 acres of undeveloped land on Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport property, Grapevine Economic Development Director Bob Farley said. The land is bordered by Northwest Highway, Bass Pro Drive, SH 121 and SH 114.

City officials have had ongoing discussions with DFW Airport representatives about plans for the land in case it was not selected for Amazon HQ2, Farley said. However, no decisions have been made at this time.

“Given its location and airport proximity and the fact there will be a [TEXRail] station on it, we do think it would certainly have interest in the future to other corporate users, so we’re going to go ahead and do some preliminary planning with that in mind,” Farley said. “You do some basic connectivity activities, and you wait and see what the next prospect needs.”

Farley said he suspects Amazon was looking for more established areas rather than undeveloped land.

“You could have created it very easily there, but you would have had to create all of it,” he said. “There wasn’t anything there to plug into … It sounds like the ones they got more seriously interested in, ultimately, were in existing urban areas.”

Regardless, the city remains committed to promoting economic development, and Grapevine is an opportune market with its location and accessibility to the metroplex, Farley said.

Dale Petroskey, CEO and President of the Dallas Regional Chamber, made a statement in response to Amazon’s announcement, affirming the DFW metro as an appealing market for companies. Since September 2017, 40 corporations have presented plans for relocations and expansions in the DFW region, including Paycom, Peloton and Smoothie King.

“Make no mistake, this has been a ‘win’ for our region regardless of the outcome,” Petroskey said in the statement. “Our business community grows and expands by the day, and our momentum as a destination of choice has only increased as a result of being a finalist for HQ2.”
By Renee Yan
Renee Yan graduated May 2017 from the University of Texas in Arlington with a degree in journalism, joining Community Impact Newspaper as a reporter in July.