South Florida leaders said Monday that Amazon is still in discussions about bringing high-skilled workers to Miami, despite reports in other media that might indicate otherwise. Meanwhile, the Wall Street Journal reported that Amazon may be contemplating splitting the coveted second headquarters, dubbed HQ2, between two different metros — with recruiting enough tech talent its top priority.
In brief comments to the Miami Herald on Monday, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez said Amazon has continued to ask for information related to Miami’s HQ2 bid, the details of which remain exempt from Florida’s Sunshine laws.
“There has not been radio silence” from the company, Gimenez said, though he did not specify whether Miami is still in the running for HQ2 or some other arrangement. He declined to comment on other speculative reports.
Later on Monday, The New York Times reported that the company was nearing deals to put HQ2 in two locations: the Long Island City neighborhood of Queens in New York City and the Crystal City area of Arlington, Virginia, a Washington suburb.
South Florida’s hopes seemed to dim Sunday, when The Washington Post reported Amazon was in final talks to put HQ2 at a site in Crystal City. That same day, the Wall Street Journal reported that Crystal City, New York City, and Dallas were in late-stage talks with the Seattle-based e-commerce giant. The Journal singled out Chicago and Miami as cities that were “[not] out of the running” despite recent contacts having apparently stopped.
Bob Swindell, head of the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, said he would not comment on new reports because, “We want to remain on great terms with them by adhering to our agreement as they navigate through their site selection process,” he said.
He added he is “confident that the company has developed a much deeper appreciation on what South Florida has to offer as a business location.”
An individual familiar with a September visit Amazon officials made to Miami said Amazon was looking to beef up its presence in Latin America and Europe and was looking at Miami in the context of its strategic location.