Don Emmert | AFP | Getty Images
A view of the waterfront of Long Island City in the Queens borough of New York, along the East River, on November 7, 2018.
Shawn Avazeh, a Long Island City-based real estate agent with Compass, was on his own honeymoon during the Amazon announcement. At that moment, Avazeh said he was flooded with phone calls from clients who’d decided on options they’d had seen with him months prior.
“I was caught off guard, essentially because most buyers on the market this year were trying to ‘get a deal’ as opposed to trying to actually ‘make a deal’, having seen this firsthand with a couple of my own listings,” Avazeh said.
Though these buyers were initially hesitant earlier this year, when the housing market gave them more leverage in negotiating, Avazeh said he’s since submitted three offers on behalf of those former clients, two of them being at ask and one slightly over, with a few more still to come that he’s currently in the process of preparing to present.
However, current residents of the neighborhood aren’t as excited about Amazon moving into the neighborhood. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the recently-elected Congresswoman of a district which borders Long Island City, has led the charge against Amazon taking up residency in the neighborhood.
In a recent tweet she wrote, “Amazon is a billion-dollar company. The idea that it will receive hundreds of millions of dollars in tax breaks at a time when our subway is crumbling and our communities need MORE investment, not less, is extremely concerning to residents here.”
While community members have called on New York City to use Amazon’s HQ site for other purposes such as a community center for locals, Amazon has agreed to donate a school site, in addition to a space dedicated to artists and a startup incubator.
Regardless of Amazon’s impending move-in date, Avazeh is confident in LIC’s ability to flourish.
“I truly believe we would’ve still continued to flourish without the news of Jeff Bezos bringing his company here, but this definitely did help in bringing more attention to this one-of-a-kind, wonderful neighborhood I myself call home,” he said.
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