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Reactions to Atlanta’s landing on Amazon HQ2 shortlist

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Elation. Apprehension. Fear. Loathing. Responses to Amazon news runs the gamut in ATL

The 20 cities left standing are heavy on East Coast options.
The 20 cities left standing are heavy on East Coast options.
Amazon

The Amazon HQ2 playoffs reached a new level of feverishness this week as 20 cities advanced to the next round (the semifinals? finals?).

The good news for Atlantans who fancy explosive growth and high-paying jobs is that the Big Peach isn’t topping CNN’s list of “biggest snubs” right now. Which it probably would have.

Reactions to the Chosen 20—both locally, nationally, and abroad—have been interesting thus far. Let’s have a look at the sampling below:

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An Engel & Völkers real estate agent told CBS46 News that while the type of employees Amazon will be seeking should covet living intown and near the Beltline, Bezos and Co. picking Atlanta could also spell good things for the ’burbs:

“Cobb County has amazing schools, and therefore would probably get a lot of Amazon people moving out to the Cobb County area and all up and down the [Ga. Highway] 400 corridor as well,” agent Jamie Turner is quoted as saying. “Those are popular places to live.”

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Apartment List updated its original analysis to include the metros on Amazon’s list of finalists. Its findings suggest HQ2 would bump up Atlanta rents by an additional .5 to .7 percent annually.

For more context, Apartment List says that means a typical Atlanta renter household would shell out between $3,882 and $5,200 more over the next decade, if Amazon’s second headquarters were here. The analysts classify that as a moderate impact.

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Forbes.com reiterated that Atlanta is a top-five contender, in its view, alongside Austin, Boston, Pittsburgh, and Toronto. Working in Atlanta’s favor, it says, is its status as a major metro area with an established transportation hub.

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The city’s freshly installed mayor was, predictably, happy:

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The Irish gambling website that captured headlines last year by slotting Atlanta as the 2/1 favorite to land HQ2 has changed its tune.

According to a press release (seriously) from Paddy Power, Boston has emerged as the betting favorite (3/1) to win.

The bookmakers added this input:

“Austin and Atlanta (both 7/2) had been the longtime joint favourites, and remain high up the betting—with Montgomery County (8/1) another big mover after the shortlist announcement, having previously been a distant option (250/1) ... Toronto (20/1), meanwhile, is the only Canadian city on the shortlist, and would represent a major snub to President Trump.”

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From the esteemed comments section on these pages, Curbed reader ATLNative72 had this optimistic take:

“I think Atlanta/The Gulch gets it. It’s everything the proposal asks for, including transit.

“I’m older than most of you and I’ve seen it firsthand—when Atlanta REALLY wants something, it gets it. Location, unified support from all players, corporate pull, incentives, airport—Atlanta wins.”

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Commenter rpeezy was less enthused:

“No thanks—we full.”

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Elsewhere, more than a few jokes were cracked online about Atlanta’s prowess for making it almost to glory, only to fumble success at the end.

This discounted T-shirt is actually for sale right now.
Amazon.com