Boston: Amazon HQ2 bid targets working class suburbs


Boston: Amazon HQ2 bid targets working class suburbs

John Marion

3 May 2018

A recent analysis by The Conference Board concluded that Boston and Washington, D.C. are the most likely locations to be chosen by Amazon for its second headquarters. The analysis looked at Amazon’s recent hiring patterns and current job postings, along with workforce competition from other companies.

In addition to a fulfillment center in Fall River, Massachusetts and distribution centers in Dedham and Hyde Park, Amazon employs more than 500 people at its robotics office in North Reading and more than 2,000 software engineers and other higher-paid workers in Boston and Cambridge. According to Boston’s HQ2 bid proposal, more than 500 Northeastern University students “have completed full-time six-month internships at Amazon during the last five years.”

This week Amazon announced plans for new offices in Boston’s Seaport district, in which 2,000 new jobs related to Alexa technology will be located. The City of Boston has promised a $5 million property tax break and $20 million to improve roadways and bus infrastructure. Many of these jobs will pay more than $150,000 in salary.

If Boston is chosen for Amazon’s second headquarters, the most likely location is the current site of the Suffolk Downs horse track in East Boston, between the working class neighborhood of Orient Heights and the neighboring city of Revere. As part of that bid, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority is studying the feasibility of building a connection between its Blue Line—which has two stops near Suffolk Downs—and Red Line, which has stops at Harvard, MIT and UMass Boston. Currently riders have to transfer to a third line in order to get from the Red to the Blue. The estimated cost of this…

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