RELATED: Amazon narrows HQ2 search to 20 cities, moving to next phase in contest for $5B economic prize
Amazon this morning dropped a list of 20 cities that made it to the next round in the tech giant’s very public HQ2 selection process, and most of the immediate reaction is about which cities didn’t make the cut.
In the mind of the internet zeitgeist, the biggest snub appears to be Detroit. The Washington D.C. area is represented by three candidates in the top 20. New York/New Jersey got two, and so did Texas. But the Motor City was left out in the cold. Reaction is starting to trickle out from officials and those involved in Detroit’s bid.
Detroit didn't make the @Amazon HQ2 list. That's a loss for all Michiganders. Why? No investment in infrastructure. No investment in human capital. No public transit. It's time for a new vision #ForOurFuture
— Abdul El-Sayed (@AbdulElSayed) January 18, 2018
Dan Gilbert's team pretty much did Detroit's Amazon HQ2 bid, which some had criticized for being too Gilbert-centric, focused on his real estate properties. Perhaps Amazon saw that and so rejected the bid:https://t.co/SOcGwwDNGe
— Niraj Warikoo (@nwarikoo) January 18, 2018
Dan Gilbert's statement on not being selected as an Amazon HQ2 finalist. pic.twitter.com/qWVkm110wB
— Kirk Pinho (@kirkpinhoCDB) January 18, 2018
Despite framing HQ2 as a competition open to all of North America, Amazon heavily favored the U.S., with Toronto as the only Canadian city to advance to the next round. Calgary came in with a strong push, as did several other Canadian cities that didn’t make the cut
HQ2 was briefly the top trending topic on Twitter in Canada. Some people were excited, while others were less enthused.
Amazon HQ2 being in Canada would be a little awkward since only about half their products actually work here.
— Joe Young (@JoeYoun9) January 18, 2018
Amazon HQ2 is an Olympics-tier scam and I hope they stay out of Canada
— mitchell (@mitchvandenborn) January 18, 2018
With three sites in the top 20, the Washington D.C. area emerged as the clear favorite. Home to a variety of important Amazon-related assets — AWS data centers in Northern Virginia, Jeff Bezos’ Washington Post — and proximity to the federal government make D.C. an interesting potential landing spot for HQ2.
Don't know if anyone noticed, but these #AmazonHQ2 finalists:
Montgomery County MD
…are all basically the same place. So I think the DC metro area is a strong contender here. pic.twitter.com/yM4Nef5mhR
— 🅲🅰🆁🆃🅴🆁 (@crtr0) January 18, 2018
— Geoff D (@G_dood) January 18, 2018
While the list contained plenty of predictable favorites, there were a couple surprises. The first one that sprang to mind for many online and in the GeekWire newsroom was Miami.
MIami source who helped with Amazon HQ2 bid: "I'm shocked we made it."
— Doug Hanks (@doug_hanks) January 18, 2018
We are very excited that @CityofMiami made it to the list of cities being considered for @amazon’s HQ2! #Miami’s business-friendly environment and our highly-skilled, multilingual workers are ready for #AmazonHQ2. https://t.co/YCzhwN6AVb
— Mayor Francis Suarez (@FrancisSuarez) January 18, 2018
Miami is a finalist? Can they box orders under water? #AmazonHQ2
— Jane Dornemann (@JaneKCall) January 18, 2018
Beyond the nuts and bolts of where HQ2 ends up, a lot of chatter focused on Amazon’s process. Narrowing the field down to 20 opens up the possibility for other rounds of cuts later, bringing to mind a reality show elimination ceremony.
#AmazonHQ2 selection process being run like The Bachelor is a symptom of the same disease that gave us a reality TV show host as president
— Tweetle Bailey ⚡ (@kevinjoy5) January 18, 2018