Amazon’s new West Side office lease has renewed the debate over tax breaks offered during its effort to bring a headquarters to Long Island City.
The ecommerce giant’s lease for 335,000 square feet at SL Green Realty’s 410 10th Avenue near Hudson Yards was reported Friday (as was its talks to lease RXR Realty and LBA Logistic’s 700,000-square-foot warehouse in Queens).
Critics of the Long Island City “HQ2” deal say this offers proof that New York did not need to provide Amazon with tax incentives or subsidies to bring it to the city, while supporters of the older deal say Amazon’s Hudson Yards lease is nothing compared to what it would have brought to Long Island City, according to the Associated Press.
“Amazon is coming to New York, just as they always planned,” New York state Sen. and vocal HQ2 critic Michael Gianaris said in a statement. “Fortunately, we dodged a $3 billion bullet by not agreeing to their subsidy shakedown earlier this year.”
Gov. Andrew Cuomo pushed back against this mindset, saying that Amazon’s new lease will bring in fewer jobs and not benefit Queens. He described it as “crumbs from the table compared to a feast.”
“We don’t have a problem bringing businesses to Manhattan,” he told the AP, “but we have been trying for decades to get that Queens waterfront developed.” [AP] — Eddie Small