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    Prince William Chamber of Commerce Event Offers a Glimpse into Amazon HQ2 Impact in Northern Virginia

    Amazon in Northern Virginia

    As most of us know, on mid-February 2019, Amazon reversed its decision to split its second headquarters (known as HQ2) between Northern Virginia and Queens, and  decided to continue with its expansion plans in Northern Virginia’s “National Landing,” which consists of three “connected urban districts”: two in Arlington (Crystal City and Pentagon City) and one in Alexandria (Potomac Yard).

    Much of the property in the area is currently held by local developer JBG Smith, which has given Amazon exclusive rights to purchase land and lease space in several of its buildings. The company plans to rent out 500,000 square feet of office space for incoming employees.

    Here’s what National Landing could eventually look like.

    Amazon’s National Landing headquarters 4.1 million square feet, accommodating 25,000 new employees.

    Hearing from the Company

    On September 12th, the Prince William Chamber of Commerce invited more than 100 attendees to hear from Ardine Williams, Amazon’s vice president of people operations and workforce development for the site, that the company had already hired 60 HQ2 employees of a planned 25,000. She explained that Amazon selected its HQ2 location due to public transportation, existing talent, its business climate and proximity to Reagan National Airport, which will be within walking distance of HQ2.

    Williams added that Amazon is on track to hire by the end of the year 400 professionals for its planned $2.5 billion headquarters in Arlington and Alexandria.

    State legislators approved a bill earlier this year that provides up to $550 million to Amazon for its investment into its Arlington headquarters, bringing new full-time jobs with an average yearly wage of $150,000. Amazon can receive an additional $200 million if it creates an additional 12,850 full-time jobs over the 25,000 promised.

    Opportunities for Real Estate

    Some have raised concerns that the increase in high-paying jobs will make the region’s housing even more expensive, forcing people with low- to moderate-income to move, a fact that could benefit the real estate market in adjacent counties. In addition, about 1,750 people or 7% of HQ2 employees are estimated to live in Prince William County, said Supervisor Ruth Anderson, R-Occoquan.

    Arlington and Alexandria plan to allocate $150 million to build 2,000 to 2,400 affordable and workforce housing units in the next decade, and Virginia has committed $15 million a year for five years for affordable housing in areas impacted by HQ2.

    The new goals would add 75,000 homes to an already ambitious goal of 245,000 housing units between 2020 and 2030. The board is also calling for at least 75% of all new housing to be in activity centers or near high-capacity transit and that at least 75% of new housing should be affordable to households with low to middle income.

    Supervisor Anderson reiterated her hopes that Amazon will bring a satellite campus or facility to the eastern end of the county near I-95.

    There is no doubt that the expansion of Amazon into Northern Virginia represents an opportunity not only to Arlington and Alexandria but also to other counties in commuting distance to HQ2. Prince William and Fauquier Counties might be able to benefit from this expansion and Larson Fine Properties can be your go-to resource to find the house of your dreams. The train is moving…register on our website now!

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