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Amazon to locate half of second headquarters in No. Virginia; state incentive package part of deal

It’s official. Half of Amazon’s second headquarters will be coming to Northern Virginia. The company will invest about $2.5 billion and create 25,000 jobs over 12 years, according to a news release from Virginia Business. Over the next 20 years, the state will pay an annual incentive to Amazon based on number of jobs and salary levels, make transportation improvements to ease mobility in the region and invest in technology education from kindergarten through master’s degree levels with matching funds from educational institutions.

The new headquarters will be housed in National Landing, which includes portions of Pentagon City and Crystal City in Arlington and Potomac Yard in Alexandria.

The investment is expected to generate $3.2 billion in new state general fund revenues over a 20-year incentive term with Amazon, according to state officials. In addition to the 25,000 jobs, state officials estimates the investment will create 22,000 permanent, direct and indirect jobs in the state.

Northern Virginia’s proposal included four sites in Alexandria, Arlington County, Fairfax County and Loudoun County. National Landing, the winning location, was proposed as a joint partnership between the Alexandria and Arlington.

As part of the commonwealth’s long-term incentive agreement with Amazon for the creation of at least 25,000 jobs, Virginia will:

Provide post-performance incentives to Amazon that will be paid annually based on job creation and wage levels, with minimum average salaries of at least $150,000. Subject to General Assembly approval, the company will be eligible to receive up to $22,000 per job or up to $550 million in incentives. Additional incentives would be available if Amazon creates more than 25,000 jobs, according to Virginia Business; and

Invest up to $195 million of non-general fund money in transportation projects that will improve mobility in the region, including additional entrances to the Metro stations at Crystal City and Potomac Yard, improvements to Route 1, a connector bridge from Crystal City to Washington National Airport, and a transitway expansion supporting Pentagon City, Crystal City and Potomac Yard. Additional funding would be available if Amazon creates more than 25,000 jobs.

To support the growth of the technology sector across the commonwealth, Virginia will:

Make performance-based investments in bachelor’s degree programs in computer science and related fields that will be distributed statewide based upon a negotiated agreement with each public university or community college that participates;

Make performance-based investments of up to $375 million over 20 years for new master’s degree programs in computer science and related fields at George Mason’s Arlington campus and for Virginia Tech to establish a new Innovation Campus in Alexandria, both of which are subject to a one-to-one match from the universities with philanthropic funds; and

Invest $50 million over 20 years in K-12 tech education and internship programming to connect higher ed students to tech jobs.

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