Since Amazon announced it was looking for a home for its forthcoming second North American headquarters last month, cities across the country have been stating their case to be the chosen location. That includes Boston, Philadelphia, 23 neighborhoods across New York City and now, Newark.
“We have exactly what Amazon is looking for, in terms of expanding their company in a city that will help them grow and where it would have real social impact,” Mayor Ras J. Baraka said Monday, according to The New York Times.
Baraka announced New Jersey’s official bid proposal at Rutgers Business School with Gov. Chris Christie and former Newark mayor Sen. Cory Booker. The school shares a building with Audible, an Amazon-owned audio entertainment company that employs 1,000 people.
Among Amazon’s criteria for HQ2 candidate cities is a metropolitan locale with a population north of 1 million, international airport access, mass transit and the ability to offer at least 500,000 square feet of commercial space by 2019 and up to 8 million beyond 2027.
Like its neighbor city across the Hudson River, Newark meets many of Amazon’s requirements for HQ2 as it is a mass transit hub, has Newark Liberty International Airport, market-rate rents and potential office space that would fit the bill.
Among the locations Newark has proposed for HQ2 is the already-existing 33 Washington St. and the Gateway Center facility near Newark Penn Station, with future development that could include 7.5 million square feet at the Mulberry Commons, South of Market or Lotus Riverfront or vacant land.
Additionally, thanks to its close proximity to the East Coast fiber optic cable, Newark can provide fast and affordable internet and broadband service.
State officials will offer up to $7 billion in tax breaks to Amazon if Newark is chosen to be the online retailer’s latest venture in New Jersey. The company already has several distribution centers, with two additional ones planned that would add 2,000 employees to its current workforce of 5,500.
Amazon will accept proposals until Thursday and is expected to announce the winning HQ2 location sometime next year.