New Yorkers are making lots of doomsday predictions about Amazon's HQ2. Here are all the things that could make it a disaster.
- Half of Amazon's second headquarters, known as HQ2, will be located in Long Island City, Queens, the company announced on Tuesday.
- The news has sparked fear and outrage among local residents, who worry about climbing rents, crowded subways, and crumbling infrastructure.
- These fears are not unfounded. As Amazon prepares to move 25,000 employees to Long Island City, and constructs a new headquarters along the Anable Basin, the area could face issues of homelessness, displacement, and the shuttering of small businesses.
A day after the announcement, New Yorkers gathered at a rally in Queens led by two local politicians who ardently oppose the move: Senator Michael Gianaris and City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer."It may be cold outside, but I am steaming mad," Van Bramer told the crowd on Wednesday. "Just this morning, several residents contacted us to say there's no heat in Queensbridge. But somehow folks who consider themselves progressive Democrats have seen fit to throw $3 billion to the richest man in the world."
In the background, protestors held angry signs with phrases like "Scamazon" and "Rent hikes now with two-day shipping."
Though it's impossible to predict the impact of HQ2, many urban experts are worried about what 25,000 new employees and a multi-billion-dollar headquarters could do to the already-fragile Long Island City.
Ahead of Amazon's arrival, residents have complained of overcrowded schools, bottle-necked subways, and failing infrastructure. Commuters say the the 7 line, the most direct route from Long Island City to Midtown Manhattan, is entirely congested during peak hours - and roads on the Queensboro Bridge aren't much better.
These issues could become worse as Amazon begins its slow takeover along the Anable Basin, an artificial inlet in Long Island City that separates Queens from Brooklyn.Here are all of the realistic, yet nightmarish scenarios that could occur in Long Island City after the tech giant moves in.