NC Cities Among Many Vying For Amazon HQ2 Facility

Sep 18, 2017

FILE - In this April 27, 2017 file photo, construction continues on three large, glass-covered domes as part of an expansion of the campus in downtown Seattle. Amazon said Thursday, Sept. 7, that it will spend more than $5 billion to build another headquarters in North America to house as many as 50,000 employees. It plans to stay in its sprawling Seattle headquarters and the new space will be "a full equal" of its current home, said founder and CEO Jeff Bezos.
Credit Elaine Thompson / AP

North Carolina's economic development community is mounting efforts to lure Amazon's new HQ2 facility to the state. The project could provide 50,000 jobs over 15 years.

Scott Levitan is president and CEO of the Research Triangle Foundation, which oversees RTP. He says state incentives will prove important to North Carolina's prospects but so will other factors.

"The ability to attract a highly-skilled and trained workforce, talent, is equally important and having the right environment for their aspirations for their HQ2 is also important," Levitan said.

Charlotte's business leaders are also putting together proposals for the HQ2 project.

Ronnie Bryant, President and CEO of Charlotte Regional Partnership, said Amazon is the type of company the city wants as it continues to grow and develop as a business market.

“I think Amazon will be very impressed with the culture of our community, the fact that we are a fast-growing community,” Bryant said. “We sit in close proximity to five major technical universities when you think about the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill, North Carolina State, UNC Charlotte, which is here in Charlotte. But also we feed from University of South Carolina, we feed from Clemson University and up north we feed from the University of Virginia. All of these schools provide engineering talent for the Charlotte region and I think this will be very attractive.”

Adrienne Cole, president and CEO of the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce, said this project would benefit the entire state.

"They're going to be looking at the talent pool of entire region,” Cole said. “We have very strong commuting pattern data that show how talent moves within the region."

Cole said the state will help coordinate those efforts to put the best proposal forward by Amazon's October deadline.