Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Sloop Seemed Poised to Land Amazon's HQ2 if Chicago Had Won

The news that Chicago didn't win the Amazon HQ2 corporate sweepstakes is relatively stale, but a new piece in Crain's points to some juicy new details about the bid.  One of the most interesting items for us Sloopsters was that "The 78" seemed to be the preferred location for the Amazon team:
In the end, Amazon wanted to look only at one site, the 78. Insiders have whispered for months that the company really liked that location, which effectively is raw, undeveloped land, but located near the central business district and the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Amazon made two trips here, not three, according to both Rivkin and the emails. Both visits included a mix of wandering around sites and looking at surrounding amenities, such as the Museum Campus, Soldier Field and Chinatown.

As we stated back in June we thought this site might tickle their fancy.  So I guess we can take some pride in "reading the tea leaves".  (sigh...)

Another interesting tidbit was a piece about U of C:
Chicago offered some intriguing little things in the response to Amazon's request for information. Included were promises that the University of Chicago would open a second campus of its renowned elementary and secondary Lab School near the HQ2 site, the Chicago Transit Authority would offer an Amazon-branded transit card for company workers, and “concierge” service in the city’s Building Department would be available for the company to reduce red tape on construction jobs and for its employees to be able to do the same on home-related work.
The article also says that Chicago was one of the "final five competitors".  Yay?!?!?!

What will become of the 78 is still an open question.  Could the development someday land an anchor corporate tenant?  It seemed primed for Amazon (sorry we had to do that).   

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