Poor transportation could deal a lethal blow to Atlanta’s attempt to be the new home of Amazon HQ 2

Amazon visited Georgia State to recruit students. Photo by Hannah Greco | The Signal

On Sept. 7, Amazon announced its intentions to open Amazon HQ2, a second and equal base of operations along its Seattle based headquarters to run the company valued at over $430 billion. In their press release, Amazon detailed the effects that the new headquarters would likely bring to the city they chose.

“We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters, Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in up-front and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs,” Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in the press release.

‘The Olympics of the Corporate World’

Cities are already lining up to become a new home base for such a massive company. It has been dubbed the Olympics of the Corporate World by Marc Cohon, the chair of Toronto Global, a Toronto development company. But unlike the Olympics, the economic impact of Amazon HQ2 won’t just be a summer-long injection of money after years of infrastructure development and municipal spending, it will be an economic impact that will be likely to compound any investment put into it. Amazon’s press release cited the impact their first headquarters has had on Seattle.

“Amazon 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,” Stated Amazon’s press release.

Amazon isn’t looking for just any city to be its new home-away-from-home, it is looking for one that is a large, business-friendly, creative community with a large pool of possible employees. With pre-requisites like those, many smaller cities are cut out of the option, but larger cities, like Atlanta, are looking to be a good home to such a massive corporation.

The Bid

In an interview with the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Gov. Nathan Deal said that he will be working hard with Kasim Reed to ensure Amazon HQ2 will soon call Atlanta home.

“I’ve made it very clear to our economic development team that this [Amazon HQ2] is a big one, and if we can get this one, it would be a very big coup for us. (…)We’re going to make a big push to try to get this,” said Governor Nathan Deal to the AJC.

Mayor Reed told The Signal that he emphasizes his and Governor Deal’s commitment to economic growth and partnership that would make Atlanta a fantastic contender.

“The partnership between the Governor’s office and the Mayor’s office has resulted in major economic development wins for the entire metropolitan region. The city’s cooperative relationship with the state sends a strong signal to companies looking to expand or relocate,” Reed said in an email.

As the capital of Georgia, Mayor Reed recognized Georgia as the anchor of the ninth largest economy in the U.S. and the eighth largest state and went on to accentuate the city’s finest qualities

“We have the world’s busiest and most efficient passenger airport, leading universities and a culture of innovation. Atlanta has the fundamental assets to be strong partners to great businesses, and help them grow and succeed,” Reed said.