Amazon plans office expansion in six US cities

E-commerce giant to bring 3,500 jobs; 2,000 will be at NYC’s Lord & Taylor building

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (Credit: Getty Images)
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos (Credit: Getty Images)

Amazon is planning to expand its offices in six major U.S. cities, just weeks after announcing plans to double down on its fulfillment centers and warehouses.

The tech giant plans to add new hubs in New York, Phoenix, San Diego, Denver, Detroit and Dallas, which will bring about 3,500 corporate jobs, the company announced on Tuesday, according to the Wall Street Journal.

In New York, the company will bring 2,000 jobs to the former Lord & Taylor building on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. It paid more than $1 billion to buy the property from WeWork, which had once planned to house its corporate headquarters there.

Amazon plans to add more than 900,000 square feet at the six new hubs, with the New York hub alone accounting for 630,000 square feet.

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The company had previously planned to bring half of its second headquarters to Long Island City with the promise of 25,000 jobs, but pulled out of the deal on Feb. 14, 2019, following fierce opposition from residents and local politicians. But even after the public breakup, Amazon kept signing leases for industrial spaces  and offices across the five boroughs. When the company signed a lease for 335,000 square feet at SL Green Realty’s 410 10th Avenue, Gov. Andrew Cuomo referred to it as “crumbs from the table compared to a feast.”

Amazon’s move to expand its physical offices comes as other tech companies are embracing remote working. But Amazon’s business has soared during the pandemic, and it plans to increase its warehouse square footage by 50 percent before the end of the year. In the second quarter, the company’s sales were 40 percent higher than the $63.4 billion from a year ago.

Amazon said it will allow staff to work from home until Jan 8., but the company plans to have most of its employees return to the office one day rather than work from home indefinitely. [WSJ] — Keith Larsen