Regional Options Boost North Texas Amazon Bid

New video promotes North Texas for Amazon

The North Texas bid for a second Amazon headquarters included a new video featuring the mayors of Dallas and Fort Worth, demonstrating the regional cooperation that went into the bid.

"It's been very impressive, and I think that will show them that we are willing to work together and this is a region where people can live in one city and work in another," said Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price.

At least five North Texas cities are known to have submitted potential sites for an Amazon campus to be included in the bid.

Jessica Heer with the Dallas Regional Chamber of Commerce, which helped prepare the bid, declined to reveal specifics but said it was submitted to Amazon on Wednesday — well before Thursday's deadline.

"We have a regional overview that showcases all the attributes for the Dallas region, showcasing why we're the best place for the Amazon second headquarters," Heer said.

Amazon's request for proposals seeks:

  • A metro area with one million or more residents
  • A stable and business-friendly environment
  • An urban or suburban location with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent
  • Communities that "think big" when considering locations and real estate options
  • Close proximity to a major international airport
  • Access to mass transit

"We have all of that," Price said. "Some sites have more than others, but there are some fabulous sites that are going in on the regional bid."

The Fort Worth Panther Island development plan north of the Trinity River along North Main Street will soon have a rail transit link to Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport. New bridges are under construction there for new Trinity River channels that will add waterfront features.

A new North Texas site that surfaced Thursday is seven square blocks of land between Dallas City Hall and Interstate 30 where a developer is already proposing a campus of buildings with up to eight million square feet of office space, exactly what Amazon has said it may require.

Irving, Lewisville, Frisco and McKinney are known to have made proposals for Amazon.

Former Amazon executive Brittain Ladd, who now lives in North Texas, says Frisco should top the crowded list of contenders.

"Frisco, to me, is a canvas that Amazon can think big and dream big, design a very special, very interesting headquarters and come here and actually turn that vision into a reality," Ladd said.

Whether or not Amazon selects North Texas, developers expect to find other tenants for the proposed locations in the regional bid.

"We'll keep our foot on the pedal for corporate relocation and talent attraction, definitely," Heer said.

In the past eight years, Heer said more than 75 companies have relocated to North Texas, bringing more than 500,000 new jobs. That's ten times more than the 50,000 Amazon has said a second headquarters could eventually employ.

Amazon is still expanding in the current headquarters city of Seattle, where some people complain about increased traffic congestion and housing costs associated with the company's rapid expansion.

"Infrastructure is always a challenge for any city, but this region is used to dealing with that because we've had this kind of growth for the last 10 to 15 years," Price said.

Amazon said it intends to make an announcement about a duplicate headquarters location by early next year.

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