Prime real estate: New Yorkers protest Amazon’s Long Island City arrival

"If you're a local retailer or small manufacturer or artist or writer or publisher, you're watching as your city and state hands your tax dollars to your most ferocious antagonist", she said.

"We are witness to a cynical game in which Amazon duped NY into offering unprecedented amounts of tax dollars to one of the wealthiest companies on Earth for a promise of jobs that would represent less than 3 percent of the jobs typically created in our city over a 10-year period", they complained, calling Amazon "a bad deal".

Amazon will receive $1.5 billion in combined incentives from the state and New York City if it hires 25,000 people and $1.7 billion if it hires 40,000.

Kim's bill would cancel the publicly-funded subsidies within the deal-which, the legislator noted, goes against NY law.

That's providing little shield from critics, including NY state legislators, who decried the incentive packages as unnecessary corporate welfare, bashing the state's Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo for negotiating the secretive deal. No tenants will be forced out as a result of Amazon moving in.

As part of its new headquarters, the e-commerce giant promised to invest $2.5 billion in Long Island City and New York City in general and to bring 25,000 jobs over 15 years to the western Queens waterfront.

Austad predicted that Long Island City's rental market will see a nice boost in the short term-not only because of Amazon's new hiring activities, but also due to an influx of tech startups that Amazon might attract to the area. Maryland and New Jersey each dangled more than $7 billion in tax credits and other sweeteners in hopes of securing a single "full equal" headquarters to Amazon's Seattle home. If Amazon lives up to New York's incentive goals, the average salary of a job at Amazon will hover around $150,000.

The census tract where Amazon is moving has a poverty rate of 10 percent, half that for all of New York City, and the household income of $130,000 a year is double the city median.

"Complete malarkey", countered state Senator Michael Gianaris, who represents the area and joined Van Bramer to host the Wednesday rally.

Still, the benefits of mass transit depend on NY and Washington maintaining and improving their systems - a severe challenge in recent years amid breakdowns, deteriorating tracks and rising expenses in both transportation systems. The bids laid out the incentive packages that Amazon would get from the cities, and the two eventual winners were not even the most generous.

Amazon appears to have chosen NY and the DC metro area because they're already superstar cities and generally pro-development, especially when it came to the immediate corporate campus selected.

And Amazon's final selections suggest that all the subsidies and giveaways probably weren't needed, other economists said.

"It's really going to help our housing market".

Just look to the Pacific Northwest, where both Amazon and Seattle have transformed dramatically together and sometimes at odds over the past 24 years, prompting resentment among a certain crowd of wistful "mossback" natives.

In 1990, Citibank completed 1 Court Square, a 49-story, 1.5 million-square-foot tower, to create low-priced space for back-office workers.

There's another cash grant of $325 million based on the company occupying a certain amount of office space.

Fund manager Bernstein said that he is not familiar with Amazon's tax situation, but that any company that is allowed to delay paying tax is getting the equivalent of an interest-free loan from the government.

We've contacted Amazon for comment, and will update this post with any response from the company.

- Amazon's HQ2 announcement on Tuesday has brought on the quite the buzz for the DC-metro area.

And it comes at a time, Lewandowski said, when residents are already fighting for working sewage pipes, schools and parks in a neighborhood that's seen a rush of new business development in recent years. That law created a program to encourage development in so-called opportunity zones, including parts of Long Island City.

"I'm not against Amazon but I am against the way this is happening", Dixon said. "The way it's going now is not good".

  • Zachary Reyes