Austin Dodges the Amazon Bullet

HQ2 going somewhere (anywhere) else

Austin Dodges the Amazon Bullet

The frankly ridiculous saga of Amazon's HQ2 expansion is this week coming to a ridiculous climax; amid a flurry of frantic leaks and scoops, the online retailer-and-more appears to have split its behemoth project in half, with up to 25,000 jobs going both to New York City (specifically Queens) and Crystal City in Northern Virginia. Austin has been on The List to compete for the final rose from Jeff Bezos, because Austin is always on such lists, and because Amazon already has about 1,000 employees here, not counting its high-profile acquisition of Whole Foods Market. Politically, though, in a metro area with near-full employment, a legit housing shortage, and wholly inadequate infrastructure even for the people and jobs already here, enthusiasm for HQ2 has been well under control. While the Cham­ber of Commerce duly provided an Austin proposal at the beginning of Amazon's avaricious quest for local bribes, the city itself remained publicly diffident: "I don't know that we want to be [Amazon's second home]," Mayor Steve Adler told the Texas Tribune back in March. Adler also asked Bezos and Co. to "see Aus­tin's challenges as an opportunity," which is not a great way to get a second date; compare to Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings, who told Amazon "we're easy" and "we're all in." Not easy enough, it seems.

Got something to say on the subject? Send a letter to the editor.

A note to readers: Bold and uncensored, The Austin Chronicle has been Austin’s independent news source for over 40 years, expressing the community’s political and environmental concerns and supporting its active cultural scene. Now more than ever, we need your support to continue supplying Austin with independent, free press. If real news is important to you, please consider making a donation of $5, $10 or whatever you can afford, to help keep our journalism on stands.

Support the Chronicle  

More Amazon
State's LGBTQ Stance May Quash Hopes for Amazon HQ
State's LGBTQ Stance May Quash Hopes for Amazon HQ
At least according to company shareholder William S. Smith

Sarah Marloff, June 1, 2018

Nuclear Freeze for Amazon?
Nuclear Freeze for Amazon?
Council members throughout the country reject HQ2

Michael King, March 9, 2018

More by Mike Clark-Madison
Austin at Large: Back (and Forth) to the Future
Austin at Large: Back (and Forth) to the Future
At some point Austin history will stop looping upon itself. Until next time …

March 17, 2023

Austin at Large: The Train Can’t Be Too Late
Austin at Large: The Train Can’t Be Too Late
It’s going to be sad, so sad, when Mayor Pete’s money comes if Austin’s not ready

March 10, 2023



One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Keep up with happenings around town

Kevin Curtin's bimonthly cannabis musings

Austin's queerest news and events

Eric Goodman's Austin FC column, other soccer news

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle