How likely is it that Amazon’s second headquarters, one that the retail giant says will be equal to its current headquarters in Seattle, will end up in a Midwest city?
Not very, according to a recent study.
Commercial real estate research firm REIS recently ranked the 10 cities most likely to land Amazon’s coveted HQ2 project. And of the 10 cities on the list, only one was in the Midwest, Chicago. And Chicago barely made the list, landing in REIS’ 10th spot.
That’s not the most comforting of news to the many Midwest cities who have submitted official proposals to Amazon. The retailer said late last month that 238 cities and regions submitted bids for the new headquarters facility. That includes, for instance, Kansas City, Missouri. CNN reported that Kansas City’s mayor, Sly James, tried to bolster his city’s case by writing five-star reviews for 1,000 items on Amazon’s Web site.
Not only did James reviews those items, he actually bought them first. Here’s a sample of one of James’ reviews, as reported on Fortune’s Web site, this one for a set of wind chimes: “When it comes to my house and my housewares, there’s nothing I value more than bang for my buck. I live in beautiful Kansas City where the average home price is just $122K, so I know luxe living doesn’t have to cost a ton. That’s why at $14.99, these wind chimes are music to my ears.”
Note that the review includes plenty of information about why Kansas City would be a great place for Amazon employees to live. Apparently, all of James’ reviews mention some positive about Kansas City.
Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky made a joint bid for Amazon’s HQ2, but the odds of the region landing the second quarters seem slim, at least according to online betting site Paddy Power. The site listed the odds of those cities most likely to land Amazon’s second quarters, with Atlanta, at 2-to-1 odds, topping the list. Austin, Texas, came in second at 3-to-1 and Philadelphia third at 7-to-1. Cincinnati, Northern Kentucky and Dayton don’t make the betting site’s list at all.
The only Midwest city on Paddy Power’s list is, again, Chicago. But the city’s odds are only 16-to-1.
The cities on REIS’ list are led by New York, which many consider a longshot because of its high cost-of-living. But REIS ranks it number one largely because of its strong mass-transit system. San Francisco comes in second on the REIS list, with Washington, D.C. third and Seattle fourth. Again, Chicago is the only Midwest city on REIS’ list, coming in 10th place.
It’s no surprise that so many cities are vying for Amazon’s headquarters. Amazon has said it will spend as much as $5 billion to build its “new facility. The space will be home to as many as 50,000 employees.