Dallas stands a decent chance of making the cut for landing Amazon.com Inc.’s second headquarters, according to a new survey from real estate data firm Zillow.
Zillow said it asked more than 100 housing and economics experts, who said they expect Amazon to choose either Northern Virginia or Atlanta for its new headquarters. Austin and Denver were also commonly cited as strong contenders.
Dallas took a likelihood ranking of 4 on Zillow’s ranking. Though average rents in the city are lower than many of the HQ2 contenders ranked above it, the Big D had a lower home value index and median household income than most of the cities Zillow ranked higher.
To see how Dallas compares, click through the slideshow above.
Among the 20 cities on Amazon’s list, Atlanta has the fourth lowest home values and rents, making it an attractive option for Amazon, Zillow said. Northern Virginia, part of the Washington D.C. metro area, is among the more expensive housing markets on the top 20 list, but would put Amazon at the doorstep of the nation’s top policymakers, Zillow added.
In addition to affordability, Zillow said experts cited land availability, talent and business friendly tax codes as a few reasons why they believe Amazon will choose Atlanta as its second headquarters. A growing tech workforce and easy access to Washington D.C. policymakers were noted by respondents as reasons why Northern Virginia may be Amazon’s chosen second home.
The survey, conducted by Pulsenomics LLC, asked more than 100 housing economists and professors about their overall expectations for the U.S. housing market, as well as what city they think is most likely and least likely to be chosen as Amazon’s second headquarters.
Among the 85 experts who responded, 12 said Amazon is most likely to choose Atlanta, 12 selected Northern Virginia, 11 selected Austin, nine selected Raleigh, North Carolina and six selected Denver.
Los Angeles, Newark, New York and Miami were the cities respondents said were the least likely to be chosen by Amazon, with many experts citing high housing costs, traffic and an unfavorable tax environment.
In January, Amazon announced that it reviewed 238 proposals from across the U.S., Canada, and Mexico to host its so-called HQ2 and narrowed the list down to 19 locations in the U.S. and one in Canada.
Developers and city officials representing more than 35 sites in over a dozen North Texas cities have publicly pitched or otherwise confirmed that their location was submitted as a potential HQ2 site.
North Texas’ proposed sites include downtown Dallas skyscrapers, Victory Park near the American Airlines Center, multiple locations in Collin County, one on the University of Texas at Dallas campus, and another at the station of the planned bullet train connecting Dallas and Houston. In Tarrant County, potential sites include a future Trinity River development north of downtown Fort Worth, and 800 acres in Grapevine on Dallas Fort Worth International Airport property.
Amazon expects to invest $5 billion and hire up to 50,000 workers for the campus.
Amazon said that in the coming months, the company will work with each of the 20 cities to “dive deeper into their proposals, request additional information, and evaluate the feasibility of a future partnership that can accommodate the company’s hiring plans as well as benefit its employees and the local community.” The firm said it expects to make a decision on HQ2 this year.
– Dallas Business Journal staff writer Bill Hethcock contributed to this report