The Pros And Cons Of Amazon Selecting Indy For HQ2

Indianapolis is among an elite group of cities vying for Amazon’s next headquarters.

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The 20 finalists for Amazon’s HQ2

Courtesy of Amazon

Amazon announced Thursday morning that its location search for a second North America headquarters, dubbed HQ2, has narrowed to a list of 20 cities. Indianapolis made the cut. With an expected $5 billion investment in construction and as many as 50,000 jobs, Amazon choosing Indianapolis for HQ2 would forever change the city’s and state’s cultural and political landscape.

According to Amazon, “HQ2 will be a full equal to our current campus in Seattle. In addition to Amazon’s direct hiring and investment, construction and ongoing operation of Amazon HQ2 is expected to create tens of thousands of additional jobs and tens of billions of dollars in additional investment in the surrounding community.”

With that in mind, what are the positives and negatives associated with landing Amazon’s second headquarters? We asked our staff for brutally honest and funny considerations:

Pros

  • Giant corporate citizens tend to sponsor things like arts and culture opportunities, educational programs, and, sure, sporting arenas.
  • A major upgrade to the city’s infrastructure, which is likely already better off than the gridlocked competing cities like Atlanta, Austin, Dallas, and Denver.
  • A dramatic increase in third-wave coffee shops and avocado toast options.
  • We would be a test market for new products, like Amazon’s yet-to-be-announced Minus Two Hour Delivery, where the company’s delivery drones drop items in your lap two hours before you even complete your order. (They just know.)
  • Perhaps BlueIndy would finally get the membership boost it needs. Or just a major overhaul in our mass transit plans?
  • Would potentially create an economic driver and influence in the city’s growing film industry.
  • Sunday sales? Maybe? Finally? Please?
  • We finally ditch that Midwestern “aw-shucks” attitude.
  • Seeing Jeff Bezos in the Snake Pit in jorts.

Cons

  • More traffic and construction everywhere.
  • Gentrification and displacement of the city’s economically vulnerable. Indy could learn a lesson from tech hubs like Seattle and San Francisco in getting ahead of this problem.
  • Alexa, why can’t I afford a home? Property values throughout the city and surrounding communities, particularly in desirable neighborhoods, would skyrocket. Which is great if you can afford your new mortgage payment. But good luck buying (or even renting) a home in Meridian Kessler in five years.
  • Longer wait times for brunch options.
  • A misguided follow-up to Indy Monthly‘s February 2007 package on the city’s top singles. Just no.
  • Seeing Jeff Bezos in the Snake Pit in jorts.

So what’s next? For those competing for the top prize of HQ2, the e-commerce juggernaut notes, “In the coming months, Amazon will work with each of the candidate locations to dive deeper into their proposals, request additional information as necessary, and evaluate the feasibility of a future partnership that can accommodate our hiring plans as well as benefit our employees and the local community.” A final decision is expected this year. Even if Indy doesn’t land it, we could still hold out hope for the next Apple headquarters.

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