Business Notes: Maryland More Open About Amazon Incentives Compared to Other Finalists

Business Notes: Maryland More Open About Amazon Incentives Compared to Other Finalists

Plus: Fox 5 inks its lease for space in downtown Bethesda building; co-op goes smoke-free

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A redacted page in Montgomery County's main proposal to try to attract Amazon to build its second headquarters in the county


Report: Maryland less secretive than D.C., Virginia on Amazon incentives

Compared to D.C. and Virginia, Maryland was forthcoming in its approach to pulling together an incentive package to offer Amazon, according to a Washington Business Journal article.

All three jurisdictions are on the short list of potential locations for the e-commerce company’s second headquarters and are hoping incentives will help their pitches rise to the top. Maryland brought its tax and infrastructure incentives before the state legislature, which approved the $8.5 billion deal last spring. However, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser worked out her city’s incentive package behind closed doors and hasn’t even shared details with council members, according to the Business Journal. Virginia was in the middle of the pack when it came to openness, with the governor’s staff and certain legislators working together to prepare the incentive package.

At the same time, Montgomery County officials redacted all information on the financial and tax incentives that they offered the Seattle-based company to persuade them to pick the Maryland location, Bethesda Beat reported in January. The county also blacked out all passages and pages that referred to the specific site it was pitching (although multiple officials have said it’s the White Flint area).

The New York Times reported this week that there’s a growing call for jurisdictions to release more details about their incentive packages, which would have huge implications for taxpayers in the chosen headquarters location.

First lease signed for office space at former Apex site

Fox 5 has signed its lease to move its studio and newsroom into the future high-rise at 7272 Wisconsin Ave.

Montgomery Newsletter, a subscription-only newsletter focused on real estate happenings, reported the media company signed the first official leasing deal for the Carr Properties building. The television station will occupy about 57,000 square feet of the 295-foot-tall office tower that’s being built where the Apex building once stood.

Carr is holding an Aug. 9 groundbreaking for the roughly 937,000-square-foot project scheduled for completion in 2021.

The Promenade votes to ban smoking

A luxury high-rise community in Bethesda is now smoke-free after the passage of a bylaw amendment.

The Promenade’s new rule prohibits smoking in apartments, on decks and balconies and anywhere within 200 feet of a building. People representing about 84 percent of the ownership interest voted on the amendment during a June 18 meeting, according to a news release. Seventy-five percent of the shares voted were in favor of the smoke-free rule.

“Passage of the bylaw amendment was a direct response to multiple complaints from many Promenade residents about their involuntary exposure to secondhand smoke from neighboring apartments,” stated a news release from The Promenade, a co-op community on Pooks Hill Road.

This article was updated to correct the location of the new smoking ban.


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