Hartford and Stamford are the two possible locations for Amazon's second headquarters in Connecticut, according to a governor's announcement on Friday.
In September, Amazon announced plans to open a second headquarters in North America that will employ as many as 50,000 workers. And Connecticut is now trying to win over the online retailer.
The company said the new "HQ2" facility will cost at least $5 billion to construct and operate.
The governor's office said after 17 submissions, Gov. Dannel Malloy said the Hartford and Stamford locations were "the state’s strongest contenders to become home to Amazon’s second North American headquarters."
“With a highly skilled talent pool, great schools and world-class universities, Connecticut offers a great quality of life and is an ideal location for Amazon’s second headquarters,” Malloy said on Friday. “We believe that the Hartford and Stamford regions best fit the criteria set forth by the company and we know that both communities will give us a competitive advantage. We are grateful to all of the communities that have shown interest. Should Connecticut be chosen, the entire state stands to benefit.”
Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development Catherine Smith said Stamford's and Hartford's proposals are "quite different," but both "offer Amazon great opportunities for growth."
“It is important to remember that a project of this magnitude will have far-reaching, positive impacts well beyond the project site. If one of these two sites is fortunate enough to be selected, the entire state will benefit. I am grateful for the outpouring of support and ideas we have received around this initiative," Smith said in a statement on Friday.
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said the capital city is "looking forward to submitting a strong proposal in partnership with East Hartford, with the Greater Hartford region, and with the State of Connecticut as a whole."
"The Hartford region has tremendous human capital, diverse and culturally rich communities, and an incredible location, and I think the idea of a campus uniting both sides of the Connecticut River is a powerful one. Recruiting Amazon anywhere in the State would be a huge win for all of Connecticut, and we’re going to do everything we can to help make that possible," Bronin said in a statement on Friday.
Stamford Mayor David Martin said his office has heard from many residents who are excited about a potential Amazon second headquarters.
"This is a competitive process and we are a David among Goliaths. But our City and the region are uniquely positioned to respond back to Amazon as we have the qualities that Amazon requested in its proposal. Stamford and the state’s package has a bold vision that will be very attractive to Amazon," Martin said in a statement on Friday.
"That said, such a large company constructing a new business campus in our community will require teamwork and support from surrounding communities. So I have met with my fellow CEOs recently to brief them on the status of our proposal plan and we further discussed what a potential new headquarters would mean for our region."
Connecticut already has two existing Amazon facilities in Wallingford and Windsor and plans were announced to plan a fulfillment center in North Haven.
Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman called Amazon "a forward-thinking company that competes for top talent, embraces strategic, energy efficient development, and promotes civic and philanthropic engagement within the company and among its employees."
“Connecticut, already home to several Amazon facilities, is a very good match to achieve those goals – and more – in their second headquarters. I’m confident that Governor Malloy, Commissioner Smith and the DECD team, and the leaders in Stamford and Hartford will make a compelling case for the new project to come to Connecticut," Wyman said in a statement on Friday.
The governor's office said Connecticut "will remain flexible and adaptive to Amazon’s needs." Smith said the Connecticut Department of Economic and Community Development "is actively working with both communities to finalize the state’s submittal."
The submittal date is Oct. 19 and the governor's office said the finalized proposal submitted by the state will be released at a later date.
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