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Amazon HQ2: Some Residents Optimistic About Positive Changes To NYC

November 14, 2018 - 6:37 pm

NEW YORK (WCBS 880/AP) — While protesters gathered in Long Island City Wednesday to rally against the decision to build Amazon’s second headquarters in Queens, others were looking forward to the possible improvements that may come from the deal.

“I think we're gonna look back and say this was one of the best decisions, the best thing to ever happen to New York's economy,” said Carlo Scissura, president of the New York Building Congress, a coalition for the city's construction industry.

He believes that the headquarters will create thousands of new jobs, lead to infrastructure improvements, transit improvements, the creation of new schools and new parks and recreational areas.

On Wednesday, thousands of residents joined local leaders in Long Island City to protest the decision. Though, Scissura said he doesn’t believe the efforts will prevent the construction.

“I will tell you from experience, that when I was very involved in helping to get Atlantic Yards and the Barclays Center and all of that, there were people who said, ‘when Barclays opens, it’s doomsday for Brooklyn,’” Scissura explained. “Fast forward, you know, seven years or six years, and the doomsday scenarios never happened.”

While he noted that he respects the protest, he said he mostly respects the “future of New York City.”

The New York City headquarters, built on the East River waterfront, would vault Amazon into the ranks of the city’s top private-sector employers while transforming a site now mostly occupied by industrial buildings and parking lots.

Amazon has promised to create 25,000 jobs in the city and it’s believed the project would eventually bring in $27.5 billion in new state revenue over the next 25 years.

(© 2018 WCBS 880. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)