>> Amazon announced on Thursday its shortlist of cities from the original 238 that made their case for being the e-commerce giant's second headquarters. The shortlist is more of a shorter list with 20 cities now in contention, including Toronto, the only city on the list that's not in the US.
Major metros New York City, Los Angeles,Chicago, and Washington, DC making the cut as was expected. But there were some surprises. Raleigh, North Carolina, Columbus, Ohio, and Newark, New Jersey all meeting the company's criteria as well. Conspicuously off the list is Detroit, which submitted a 242 page bid and promotional video in the hopes of reviving the Motor City, which emerged from bankruptcy in 2014.
Choosing Canada's largest city would likely upset one notable critic of Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, whose Seattle based company said in September it would build a $5 billion HQ2 in North America. That kicked off a competition between cities and states offering billions in tax cuts and incentives that could bring in an estimated 50,000 new jobs.
Amazon will now work with each of the candidate locations to evaluate their feasibility of a future partnership, and said it expects to make a final decision this year.