While much of America waited in high anticipation for Amazon’s decision about where to locate its touted second world headquarters–the celebrated HQ2–we in Revere took it as an opportunity to showcase our great city to the nation. While Amazon has selected New York City and Northern Virginia, Revere’s place on Amazon’s short list gives us an advantage in attracting new, innovative and growing business of the future.
While we never staked our future on Amazon choosing Suffolk Downs, the process allowed us to realize this location’s significance and our city’s real opportunities for future growth and job creation. Revere is in the enviable position to say that we currently have over $750 million worth development in the pipeline right now. We always have regarded the Suffolk Downs site worthy of far more than just one company or idea.
Our vision for the Suffolk Downs site began to crystallize months before Amazon ever announced its HQ2 quest. Had Amazon picked Boston-Revere, it may have accelerated the Suffolk Downs development. But in the year since Amazon began its hyped contest, Revere has stayed its course, systematically and confidently, toward a future with or without Amazon. In tandem with the HYM Investment Group, the owners of the Suffolk Downs property since the spring of 2017, we can see, right now, the tangible product of skillful land use planning.
Our City Council is poised to approve a Planned Unit Development at the Suffolk Downs location that has evolved from more than a year’s worth of meticulous planning, dozens of public meetings, and extensive cooperative efforts among HYM, the City, and interested governmental and civic organizations. We anticipate construction on the first phase of the project to begin before the end of next year.
To be sure, Revere’s image was enhanced by its waltz with Amazon. Companies worldwide now have seen the value and amenities that vaulted Revere onto Amazon’s short list. They are now hearing about all that Revere has to offer, with access to public transportation, robust housing stock, an excellent school system, and our most prized natural resource, Revere Beach. They realize our proximity to Logan Airport, to Boston, to Kendall Square, world-renowned colleges and exceptional medical institutions. Now, they know our leadership is eager to create jobs and spawn economic opportunity for all of our people.
Competing in the rarefied real estate atmosphere that Amazon fostered, also inspired us to think more strategically, and be more astute as we pondered our development potential. We have become more discerning as we eye our partners. Too many times over too many years Revere was jilted by fickle suitors. No more. Revere is a city on the move, assured that our future will at long last correspond to our immense possibilities.
It is because of our people that Revere is on a fast track to our future, and I could not be more excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.
Amazon? Good luck with the Yankees. Go Sox!
Brian Arrigo is Mayor of the City of Revere