The 178-acre Almono site in Pittsburgh’s Hazelwood neighborhood is a leading site candidate in the city’s pursuit of Amazon’s HQ2. (Photo by Ryan Loew/PublicSource)

Pittsburgh is among those scrambling to assemble its bid to be the home of this unprecedented corporate expansion of more than 8 million square feet of office space, which would be more than double the size of any other urban corporate headquarters in the United States (not including Amazon’s 33-building campus in Seattle).

Following the company’s Sept. 7 request for proposals (RFP), Mayor Bill Peduto has said he anticipates city government and private entities will invest at least $248,000, and possibly much more, to shape Pittsburgh’s proposal for the headquarters’ location, amenities and incentives. The RFP assumes applicants will include a generous allocation of incentives to sweeten the deal, and Amazon indicates those additional incentives will be among the “significant factors in the decision-making process.”

This comes at a time when discussions about inequality and Peduto’s own campaign to build a “city for all” has been complicating Pittsburgh’s many accolades as a “best place to live.” From 2010 to 2015, median wages increased by 8 percent among Whites in Pittsburgh; among Blacks, they dropped by nearly 20 percent. One child out of every six in Pittsburgh lives in poverty.

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