New study claims Denver isn’t good enough for Amazon

Research from Reis Inc. shows Amazon may be more attracted to NYC, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., than Denver.

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Governor John Hickenlooper speaks at a press conference on heathcare in the Capitol building, Aug. 31, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)  capitol; governor john hickenlooper; kevinjbeaty; denver; colorado; denverite

Governor John Hickenlooper speaks at a press conference on healthcare in the Capitol building, Aug. 31, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper downplays the Denver metro’s odds of actually attracting Amazon’s new headquarters saying poor transportation infrastructure would make the area a “long shot.”

A new study from the Reis Inc. seems to back up the governor’s claims. Research from the New York City-based real estate analysis company shows Denver falls behind NYC, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., largely due to Mile High City’s poor access to public transportation.

Amazon announced Sept. 7 that it’s looking for where to build its second headquarters or HQ2. The facility, Amazon said, would employ as many as 50,000 people — which would put it on par with the town of Parker — and bring more than $5 billion in construction and operations investments.

Colorado is one of the 54 cities, states, provinces, districts and territories that sent proposals for Amazon last month. Denver came in at in at No. 15 on the Reis ranking compiled in October.

“It should be mentioned that Amazon is committed to sustainability efforts and is looking to develop its HQ2 with a ‘dedication to sustainability,'” the Reis report states.

“Within their ‘core preferences’ Amazon lists proximity to airports, major highways, mass transit as well as a population center.”

Hickenlooper has been calling for state legislators to address the $9 billion gap in the state’s transportation system for months. The Democrat’s only recently started tying the issue to the state’s ability to attract companies like Amazon.

“We haven’t built the transportation infrastructure we need, even now. So, I recognize, that incumbent upon this, if Amazon comes, we got to finish Interstate 70. We got to get Interstate 25 up to snuff, but we got to do that anyway,” Hickenlooper told 9News’ Jeremy Jojola last month.

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Business & data reporter Adrian D. Garcia can be reached via email at agarcia@denverite.com or twitter.com/adriandgarcia.

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