By Justin Chermol
Unlike some Democrats in New York City, Virginia's top Dems see no downside to Amazon moving in.
Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) told Cheddar he is confident the e-commerce giant's newest planned headquarters will create a "culture of entrepreneurship" throughout the region that will benefit locals and local businesses.
Amazon ($AMZN) announced Tuesday that it would split its second unbuilt headquarters between Arlington, Va, just outside the nation's capital, and Long Island City, in Queens, N.Y. In an Amazon press release, the tech giant promised to bring more 25,000 jobs at an average salary of $150,000 to the Arlington neighborhood it dubbed "National Landing."
Warner said he expects the benefits to be even more far-reaching.
Not only will Amazon drive employment and wages, but the headquarters will boost confidence in local businesses and attract new talent, he said. That includes indirect talent, like "the sub-contractors that will support Amazon, the folks that will come out of Amazon and start their own businesses."
Amazon's arrival has sparked concern from some locals in both places, particularly about the likelihood of increased traffic and rent.
But Warner doesn't think the risks outweighs the potential rewards. Quite the opposite.
"The state is committed to put another $200 to 300 million in additional transportation funding to the region," he said, adding that Amazon will recruit an "age cohort" that favors mass transit, biking, and walking.
He said Amazon's arrival also makes possible the prospect of a "regional housing authority" to ensure there is affordable housing from Northern Virginia to D.C. to Maryland.
"We will look back and call this one of those transformative moments for Northern Virginia and the Greater Capital Area," Warner said.
For full interview click here.