The State of Connecticut is putting together a proposal to lure Amazon to build its next headquarters in the state.
The Seattle-based company recently announced it wants spend $5 billion on a second headquarters to house as many as 50,000 employees.
Amazon says it’s looking for areas that are suburban or urban, well-connected to transit stations, and in a metro area with at least one million people.
Connecticut officials say the state meets the criteria the company is looking for.
Catherine Smith, commissioner of the State’s Department of Economic and Community Development, says, “We were really excited to learn that Amazon is thinking about a second East Coast headquarters, although there’s a lot of speculation about what that really means. But I think what that could mean for Connecticut is a lot of really interesting, great new jobs, and the potential for actually putting us on the map.”
The State of Connecticut is looking to rebound from the loss of GE, which moved its headquarters from Fairfield to Boston last year. The insurance giant Aetna also announced that it’s moving its headquarters from Hartford to New York City next year.
New York City, Boston, as well as Nassau and Suffolk Counties on Long Island, are also preparing offers for Amazon.
Smith says the competition will be fierce, but she believes that Connecticut has a shot.
“I think for us the challenge is...with dense downtowns already that are largely packed with existing buildings, finding enough space to house what they were talking about over the next several years is a challenge. But we are going to work with the all communities to have them help us figure out what are they best places we can do this.”
Challenges are also coming from within the state. At a public hearing on Friday, some officials said Stamford could be a possible contender. Bridgeport Mayor Joe Ganim and Fairfield First Selectman Mike Tetreau have also expressed interest in becoming Amazon’s second corporate headquarters.
In a press release on Sunday, Mayor Ganim said, “We believe that the City of Bridgeport and Fairfield County have the attributes and meet the criteria that Amazon is looking for.”
Proposals are due to Amazon by October 19.