The contest is over for Amazon, and the people of Long Island City have spoken: Amazon shall not pass.
The competition in coaxing Amazon to build their new HQ2 was nothing more than a high school popularity contest, with a clear winner even before it officially started. The two major cities of Arlington, Virginia and Long Island City, Queens were “chosen” to be the center of sky-high price increases and gentrification as far as hipsters could see beyond their phones.
These are just a number of symptoms that have plagued Seattle – or rather Amazon City – since the e-commerce juggernaut established itself in the city. But Seattle has the space and economic freedom to allow Amazon to transform the city into their corporate utopia. New York doesn’t.
Seattle’s population of 700,000 is spread over 83 square miles, and significantly less dense than Queen’s exponentially higher population of 2.3 million over 103 square miles.
Frankly put, Long Island City simply does not have the space to accommodate more skyscrapers and the respective amount of employees it takes to maintain such an economy of scale outside of Manhattan.
Amazon should pick a new, more deserving city to increase the amount of jobs and economic growth.
A prime example of a city to increase growth is Detroit, which has had declining growth ever since the Great Recession in which automobile manufacturers and corporate offices abandoned ship, creating a city of stagnation.
But according to the Detroit Free Press, Amazon said there simply wasn’t enough talent to establish an office of that scale in Detroit.
It’s a never-ending cycle of not having enough talent and not having enough job opportunities that brings the whole debacle and discourse full circle.
And that’s where the people of Queens came together to fight for their survival in the city. Freshman Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is now being credited with stopping Amazon from building in her district, but despite having a degree in economics, the Democratic-Socialist Representative has used this as an opportunity to further her illogical economic goals for the country.
According to a Sierra College poll cited in Newsweek, 56 percent of New Yorkers supported Amazon’s new HQ2 in Long Island City. But this is not representative of those who live in the neighborhood where most of the effects of Amazon would’ve occurred.
Although the company known for the smile on their boxes and logo would have liked to help the community prosper, it will now be incredibly difficult to do now with the local communities rebelling and influencing giant corporate decisions. These progressive economic politics will surely cost everyone involved in the long run, with lost opportunity costs to increase jobs and overall additions to the local economies.