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lyft543Lyft is opening an engineering center in Seattle — the latest in a long list of Bay Area companies to tap the region’s tech talent.

The San Francisco-based ride-hailing company recently established a temporary office in downtown Seattle that houses six operations and software engineering employees, the Seattle Times reported Monday.

GeekWire reported earlier this month on Lyft’s growth spurt in Seattle, noting how the company hired a handful of Seattle-based employees and was looking to add more engineers in Seattle.

When asked by GeekWire on Sept. 3 about an engineering center in Seattle, a Lyft spokesperson said they had not established one. When asked on Sept. 8 about the job openings, a spokesperson said “our goal is to open and grow a Seattle office with local tech talent.”

Lyft recently hired Todd Kelsay as the new “Seattle General Manager.” The company began hiring city managers in its biggest markets earlier this summer, following in the footsteps of rival Uber.

Kelsay was manager at Sun Microsystems and Microsoft before taking on the director of transportation and emergency management role for Mercer Island School District in 2005, a position he held for a decade.

Kelsay told the Times that the new Lyft office will have 20 employees by year’s end. The Seattle location is Lyft’s first engineering office outside of San Francisco. The company, which has raised more than $1 billion in venture financing since it was founded and now operates in 65 cities in the U.S., has offered its ride-hailing service in the Emerald City since 2013.

Uber, meanwhile, has had an office in Seattle since the company began operating here four years ago. It opened up a Seattle engineering center in March, with plans to hire as many as 50 people or more this year.

Uber and Lyft are among a large group of tech companies competing for technical talent in the Seattle region. Giants like Google, Facebook, Dropbox, Salesforce, Twitter and many others have engineering-focused offices in the region. See our list and map of more than 50 engineering outposts in the Seattle area.

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