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Amazon is said to be close to selecting two cities as the site of its second headquarters, dubbed HQ2: the Long Island City section of Queens, New York, and the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia, The New York Times reported on Monday evening.
The reported selection follows nearly a year of lobbying by cities and regions across the United States and Canada.
The Washington, DC, metro area was long seen as the frontrunner for the contest, with Northern Virginia specifically seeming to pull ahead in recent months.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that the e-commerce giant is considering a plan to construct its second headquarters in two different cities, with 25,000 employees at each of the campuses.
Amazon will now likely begin planning the new headquarters, and construction could start soon for a 2019 opening date.
The long wait is over.
Amazon is said to be in talks to build its second headquarters, HQ2, in the Long Island City section of Queens, New York, and the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia, The New York Times reported on Monday evening, citing people familiar with the plans.
The decision follows more than a year of speculation and lobbying by communities around the United States and Canada.
Amazon will likely now get to work building and planning its new headquarters. It said it hopes to have at least part of the new campus operational sometime in 2019.
The saga of HQ2 began in September 2017, when the company put out its official request for proposals. In the request, Amazon promised 50,000 jobs and $5 billion in investment to the new host city. Nearly every major metro area in the US threw its hat in the ring.
Amazon had whittled down the list to 20 by December but has barely made a peep about the selection process otherwise.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that the e-commerce giant had decided to construct its second headquarters in two different cities, with 25,000 employees at each of the campuses.
The Times' report later that same day seemingly confirmed that, but added that the two selected areas were likely Long Island City and Crystal City. The Times report also confirmed that the deal is close to being finalized.
Selecting two cities is something of a curveball, as it was not originally part of the plan Amazon proposed for HQ2.
Amazon did not immediately respond to Business Insider's request for comment on if it has made a final selection.
The evidence had long been pointing toward the Washington, DC metro area, which had submitted three separate regions for consideration. Amazon joined DC's chamber of commerce in August. Add to that the fact that Amazon has already had its public policy and lobbying operations in the district, and the US capital seemed like a shoo-in.
In recent months, the betting odds had quite literally zeroed in on Northern Virginia. The region is in what has been referred to as the "bull's-eye of America's internet," adding to its chances. A local news site called ARLnow.com said it had seen an unusual spike in traffic from Amazon to an article from December titled "County Wins Top Environmental Award from US Green Building Council" explaining how Virginia's Arlington County was the first in the US to be selected for an environmental award.
There was less speculation about New York City, but New York Governor Andrew Cuomo made his desire to host Amazon clear recently.
"I’ll change my name to Amazon Cuomo if that’s what it takes," Cuomo told reporters on Monday. "Because it would be a great economic boost."
Cuomo reportedly met with Amazon executives in Seattle two weeks ago, and would meet with them again to try and close the deal, NY1 reported.
Once Amazon confirms the selections, it will begin the more tedious job of working with local business leaders to integrate itself into the community.Join the conversation about this story » NOW WATCH: Buffalo Wild Wings' Blazin' Wing Challenge requires a waiver before attempting