If Atlanta Wins the Amazon Headquarters 2, What Then?
We still hear quite a bit about Atlanta being in the running to become the home of the Amazon HQ2. What you don’t hear much about is the impact this would have on housing. Not just housing, but affordable housing. With Amazon comes an influx of new residence to be employed by them. Inman News took a look at this situation and how it may impact what ever city should become the new home of the HQ2.
Amazon headquarters will pose housing challenges
Amazon is poised to drop a “prosperity bomb” on whichever city it chooses to build a $5 billion, 50,000-person second headquarters. This is according to a new study from the Washington, DC-based think tank the Brookings Institution.
The company has spent the last year running a public contest-of-sorts for its Amazon HQ2 selection, with various city governments racing to fulfill Amazon’s most desired urban features and requirements.
The question is whether new wealth will be shared equitably or accrue mostly to a relatively small group?
One of the biggest factors that will decide the answer is how the chosen city will respond to Amazon’s impact on housing affordability.
Amazon estimates it’s generated $38 billion in economic activity in Seattle between 2010 and 2016. Local unemployment fell to a very low level. Yet, the company’s impact has arguably left some vulnerable residents worse off.
That’s in large part because the cost of housing has outpaced wage gains. Income of families at the 20th percentile of the earnings distribution grew by 14 percent between 2014 and 2016. According to Zillow, rents increased at 19 percent.
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