There are many reasons for Amazon to choose the Washington, D.C., area over others.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos already owns The Washington Post, and he recently purchased the largest home in D.C. Amazon's cloud service AWS also has a huge data center presence in the northern Virginia region.
It's unclear exactly what type of incentives the region has offered to Amazon for HQ2. But public records of the District of Columbia's proposal, discovered by WAMU, give some hints of what to expect.
Although heavily redacted, the proposal offers relocation reimbursements of up to $5,000 for each employee relocating to D.C. and wage reimbursements of up to $10,000 for each new hire. It also promises a zero percent corporate tax rate for five years and a reduction in the corporate tax rate from 9 percent to 6 percent "for the life of the company." It also offered several property- and sales-tax exemptions.
Perhaps the more unique offering is a new education and training center called "Amazon University." The proposal says the new facility will offer "customized educational curriculum for bachelors, masters, and executive education" for Amazon at "DC government's expense." It also offered to partner with local universities for a new program tailored for Amazon's workforce.
In response to making the final list, Washington D.C. mayor Muriel Bowser said in a statement, "When asked what's the best city for one of the fastest-growing companies, we answered: #ObviouslyDC. Making this list reaffirms what we already knew going into the bid process – Washington, DC is no longer a one-company government town, we are a leader in innovation and tech, brimming with top talent and endless opportunity."