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Amazon HQ and What It Means for Cities

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Amazon’s big announcement that it will build a second headquarters has ignited interest among U.S. and Canadian cities and states hoping to be its chosen home.

Yet Amazon’s request for proposals offers a more profound message for cities: In this hyper-digital global economy, high-tech firms value specific attributes, including a skilled, technical workforce; access to public transit and bike lanes; sustainable buildings and public spaces; and diversity.

Rather than get distracted by the competition brought about by Amazon’s announcement, state and city leaders should invest in these attributes to create long-term growth and opportunity for citizens.

Amy Liu, Vice President and Director, Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings and Mark Muro, Senior Fellow and Director of Policy at the Metropolitan Policy Program, Brookings

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