RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - How does 50,000 new, full-time jobs in our area sound, with an average pay of $100,000 per year? RVA is stepping up big-time in hopes of luring Amazon's second North American headquarters. Sites in Richmond, Chesterfield and Henrico are on the table.
One of those locations, according to a source, is 60 acres of city land near the Diamond, leading into I-95.
RVA faces a lot of competition. More than 50 cities are vying for the project, including other areas of Virginia.
The Greater Richmond Partnership is leading RVA's proposal to Amazon next week, in coordination with the governor's office. Greater Richmond Partnership chairwoman Angela Kelly-Wiecek tells NBC12, Amazon making its second home in Central Virginia would be "transformational" for the area.
Amazon is ready to spend $5 billion in the chosen city, as it has outgrown its Seattle headquarters, according to CEP Jeff Bezos. The company is looking for its second headquarters to be situated near a metropolitan area, an airport and have direct access to mass transit. Plans for a high-speed rail from Richmond to D.C. are already in the works, with a station proposed near the Boulevard.
"This would be so beneficial to Richmond and the region at large," said Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney, at the prospect of Amazon choosing the River City. "I said from day one that we would be competitive for the Amazon HQ2 project, and we are."
However, "being competitive" is reportedly being taken to new levels in this bidding process. One Georgia town is even proposing a name change to "Amazon City."
"I don't think we're going to go to those great lengths. I think our talent speaks for itself, and our location… speaks for itself," added Stoney.
City Council Member Kim Gray says she has some concerns about the amount of congestion an Amazon headquarters by the Diamond would realistically create, if it were to come to Richmond. Certainly, a lot still needs to be hashed out, once a city is selected.
Amazon is set to make a decision next year.
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