Newark does not throw the towel yet. As new reports preclude New Jersey's largest city from being one of two locations for Amazon's second main office, state and local officials are seeking Hail Mary.
In response to national reports that Amazon would divide its HQ2 between New York's Long Island City and Crystal City, Virginia, Newark is pushing to convince online retailers to give Newark a slice of the cake. Negotiations were NJ Advance Media confirmed.
The persons did not want to be named, in order not to endanger their relations with Amazon.
RIO-NJ was the first to report that officials were seeking a partnership with New York City.
"Newark could be an ace in New York," a source told NJ Advance Media. "The thought that the horse has left the barn and both cities have understood it is going on" is not definitive, the person added.
Although both Virginia and New York are conducting "preliminary discussions" with Amazon, the company has not informed the finalist cities of its decision, sources said.
"That's all speculation, there was no official communication," said a source.
Even before news came that Amazon was leaning towards Virginia and New York, state and local New Jersey officials offered to travel 11 miles across the Hudson River with their neighbor, both sources said.
They said that although they still considered Newark to be a strong opponent, the stakes were too high not to miss the chance.
"No other city on the list can be transformed like the city of Newark," said one source. "Strategically, it makes sense for the region to come together so that no city takes the brunt of development, but Amazon brings the best of both worlds."
The recent reports that Amazon restricted the field to Virginia and New York forced the state and local officials to double in that place – offering Newark as a "release valve".
One source states that Newark already has existing properties for Amazon and is better suited for each new build. New Jersey, the person said, can help sweeten the deal for the company by offering a $ 7 billion incentive package, though paired accordingly.
It is still not clear how – or if – Amazon is splitting its HQ2, which officials have pledged to create 50,000 jobs and invest $ 5 billion.
Aisha Glover, CEO of the Newark Alliance and the city's lead actor for his offer on Amazon, said Newark still has the most to gain and was distinguished by the social impact the company has in New Jersey's largest city ,
"We still see this as a chance not just to tell the equity story, but to deliberately play it out, and if we get the chance, we'll use it for all its value," she said. She declined to talk about ongoing negotiations, but said that Amazon has not confirmed official decisions regarding Newark.
Glover confirmed to NJ Advance Media that Newark received a second visit from Amazon in late summer, but the city officials were not involved this time.
Only a handful of cities received second visits after media reports.
One source said that although they hope to work out an agreement with New York, Amazon boss Jeff Bezos should say, "Newark is my man, we're ready for it, too."
One source said Amazon recently asked officials for the phone numbers of Newark Mayor Ras Baraka and Governor Phil Murphy, a likely sign that the decision is coming soon.
Amazon has just said that they will decide by the end of the year.
Karen Yi can be reached on firstname.lastname@example.org, Follow her on Twitter @karen_yi or on Facebook,