New York, San Francisco and Seattle have come out as the cities to beat in the race for Amazon’s second headquarters. According to a study that looked at the availability of a tech workforce, access to higher education, reliability of public transportation, the ease of doing business, the quality of life, tax incentives, and the general cost of living, Washington D.C. and San Jose rounded the top five.
The study, conducted by REIS, a commercial real estate information company, presupposed a preference for a hub outside the West Coast as insinuated by an Amazon executive. Seattle, which is Amazon’s hometown did not bid for the project but contributed to a regional proposal, which means the field is wide open for suburban Virginia, New Orleans and Boston to compete with New York and Washington D.C.
Boston ranks highly as a tech hub producing top talent in various fields such as cloud computing, computer vision, robotics and artificial intelligence. Amazon already has offices in Boston with plans announced earlier this year to add another 900 jobs. Although the city has lost its luster as a tech hub after several companies relocated including Facebook which after being founded moved to Silicon Valley, it has a surfeit of talent in such diverse areas as cloud computing, artificial intelligence, computer vision and robotics.
Below is the score card;
The score card produced by REIS considers the core requirements put forth by Amazon in its request for proposals. They include a location that has a steady supply of talent in software development and related fields as well as an environment that is business-friendly. The preferred candidate will be a metropolitan area with more than one million residents with viable real estate options and mass transit facilities. In case Amazon uses the same kind of data, the online retail giant will be heading to establish its second headquarters in a city that’s well established rather than an upcoming metropolis.
San Francisco and Seattle came out strongly in terms of their large pool of tech employees while Washington D.C. and New York are endowed with advanced mass transit infrastructure.
The study however deduces that the decision makers may consider other auxiliary factors as tax cuts granted by the city or state or mundane ones such as access to the ocean, a lake or a river.