Sep 7th, 2017

Over the last 20 years, Amazon has evolved from a small time online book dealer to a massive retail giant that has cowed most brick and mortar retailers with its ability to distribute goods across the US. Now, the company has announced plans to build a second headquarters somewhere in North America.

Dubbed Amazon HQ2, Amazon says this second headquarters would be just as important as its main headquarters currently located in Seattle. The company said it plans to invest $5 billion to build the headquarters and employ around 50,000 people. So where is it going to be located? Amazon hasn’t decided yet and it’s asking local and state governments to prepare a request to get Amazon to consider their location.

Amazon HQ2 Requirements

  • Metropolitan areas with more than one million people
  • A stable and business-friendly environment
  • Urban or suburban locations with the potential to attract and retain strong technical talent
  • Communities that think big and creatively when considering locations and real estate options

With those requirements in mind, it’s not hard to narrow down the places where Amazon would be willing to place their second headquarters. A quick glance at Wikipedia shows that there are only about 50 metropolitan areas in the United States that meet these set requirements. I’ve marked the unlikely candidates in red based on their West Coast location, as it’s unlikely Amazon will set up a second HQ along the same coast.

Metropolitan Areas with 1+ million

  • New York City, NY & Newark, NJ
  • Los Angeles, Long Beach, & Anaheim, CA
  • Chicago, Naperville, & Elgin, IL
  • Dallas, Fort Worth, & Arlington, TX
  • Houston, The Woodlands, & Sugarland, TX
  • Washington, Arlington, & Alexandria, DC
  • Philidelphia, Camden, & Wilmington, PA
  • Miami, Fort Lauderdale, & West Palm Beach, FL
  • Atlanta, Sandy Springs, & Roswell, GA
  • Boston, Cambridge, & Newton, MA
  • San Francisco, Oakland, & Hayward, CA
  • Phoenix, Mesa, & Scottsdale, AZ
  • Riverside, San Bernardino, & Ontario, CA
  • Detroit, Warren, & Dearborn, MI
  • Minneapolis, St. Paul, & Bloomington, MN-WI
  • San Diego & Carlsbad, CA
  • Tampa, St. Petersburg, & Clearwater, FL
  • Denver, Aurora, & Lakewood, CO
  • St. Louis, MO-IL
  • Baltimore, Columbia, & Towson, MD
  • Charlotte, Concord, & Gastonia, NC-SC
  • Orlando, Kissimmee, Sanford, FL
  • San Antonio & New Braunfels, TX
  • Portland, Vancouver, & Hillsboro, OR
  • Pittsburgh, PA
  • Sacramento, Roseville, & Arden-Arcade, CA
  • Cincinnati, OH-KY-IN
  • Las Vegas, Henderson, & Paradise, NV
  • Kansas City, MO-KS
  • Austin & Round Rock, TX
  • Cleveland-Elyria, OH
  • Columbus, OH
  • Indianapolis, Carmel, & Anderson, IN
  • San Jose, Sunnyvale, & Santa Clara, CA
  • Nashville, Davidson, Murfreesboro, &Franklin, TN
  • Virginia Beach, Norfolk, & Newport News, VA
  • Providence, RI & Warwick, MA
  • Milwaukee, Waukesha, & West Allis, WI
  • Jacksonville, FL
  • Oklahoma City, OK
  • Memphis, TN-MS-AR
  • Raleigh, NC
  • Louisville/Jefferson County, KY-IN
  • Richmond, VA
  • New Orleans & Metairie, LA
  • Hartford, West Hartford, East Hartford, CT
  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • Birmingham & Hoover, AL
  • Grand Rapids & Wyoming, MI
  • Tucson, AZ

Amazon has recently purchased Whole Foods, which is based in Austin, Texas and gives it a foothold in the state. What do you think? Which of the metropolitan areas on this list do you think Amazon will choose as their new base of operations? Let us know in the comments.

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