Philadelphia officials hope Amazon will deliver new headquarters to city

Packages from Amazon ahead of delivery (Scott Sady/AP Photo)

Packages from Amazon ahead of delivery (Scott Sady/AP Photo)

Amazon is looking for a new building with room for up to 50,000 workers.

The ideal spot will be near a metro area with more than a million people; have direct access to mass transit; and be within 45 minutes of an international airport.

Philadelphia officials are able to check the boxes for all those requirements — and they want a chance at winning the billion-dollar project.

Amazon already has regional distribution hubs in New Jersey and Delaware.  The new facility would be a second North American headquarters for the giant online retailer and cover 8 million square feet.

“This is not a logistics center, it’s corporate headquarters,” said Harold Epps, city commerce director.

The center, and the jobs that come with it, would transform any economy, he said, and the competition is expected to be fierce.

“I expect everybody from Toronto to Atlanta to Dallas to Boston, among others,” to be in contention, Epps said. “It’s going to be a very, very, very competitive process, but we also expect Philadelphia to be very formidable.”

Epps said the former Navy Yard could accommodate the sprawling campus that Amazon envisions.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.