New York City

De Blasio weighs in on rumored Amazon site

A New York Post report over the weekend suggested that internet retail and cloud computing giant Amazon was looking at planting roots on Manhattan’s West Side has reignited the debate over the city’s loss of a new Amazon headquarters earlier this year.

Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at City Hall on Tuesday.

Mayor Bill de Blasio speaks at City Hall on Tuesday. Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office.

A New York Post report over the weekend that internet retail and cloud computing giant Amazon was looking at planting roots on Manhattan’s West Side has reignited the debate over the city’s loss of a new Amazon headquarters earlier this year. Responding to the report at a press conference on Tuesday, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio welcomed the move – with one stipulation. “If Amazon decides – as Google did and as many other tech firms have – that they’re going to expand their presence in New York City, that’s their choice,” he said. “But again, they’re going to have to do it on their own.”

Alongside Gov. Andrew Cuomo, de Blasio supported the deal that would have brought an Amazon headquarters to Long Island City with over $3 billion in tax incentives. But on Tuesday, the Democratic presidential candidate struck a different tone, suggesting that any help once offered to Amazon wouldn’t be re-upped in the company’s reported search for more than 100,000 square feet of office space. “You know, we are very jaded now after having made a full agreement that I thought was a fair agreement that they just walked away with in the dead of night,” the mayor said.

In February, when Amazon pulled out of the HQ2 deal, the abrupt move drew a range of reactions from those who helped craft the agreement. While Cuomo focused his frustration on “a small group of politicians put their own narrow political interests above their community,” de Blasio turned his ire on Amazon for bailing on the plans. “You have to be tough to make it in New York City,” he said at the time. “We gave Amazon the opportunity to be a good neighbor and do business in the greatest city in the world. Instead of working with the community, Amazon threw away that opportunity.”

For the rest of today's tech news, head over to First Read Tech.

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