Thoughts on the announcement? First few hundred jobs will be downtown (in Durham I.D.) but it's hard to imagine they go to full expansion of 1,000 jobs without moving outside the CBD, right? RTP is a more natural fit long-term I think. But maybe not.
I do find it interesting that no incentives have been reported as part of the move.
I have a few thoughts, starting with the most obvious: this is a landmark moment for Durham and the broader Triangle region. We’ve been waiting for a name brand like Google to plant a flag and make a significant investment here. It’s huge validation for the talent and opportunity here and will surely attract notice from across the country. Suspect this will be a significant catalyst for the region moving forward in terms of attracting new companies and talent. You can’t overstate how significant it is to be mentioned in the same breath as NYC, SF and Seattle.
Regarding your real estate question, my feeling is that the consistent references to downtown are intentional. This seems to be a different animal than the lab/science operations that are prevalent in RTP and I believe that Google would likely want to deliver a more engaging experience than what is available in RTP in terms of restaurants, entertainment, etc in close proximity to work. They could do something at Hub RTP when that’s finished I guess but it’s not really “Durham” and sort of defeats the purpose of locating here. The news articles have also highlighted the relationships with Duke and NCCU which are basically downtown.
An obvious choice would be to put the permanent hub at ATC2 or the Northgate redevelopment which would give lots of access to amenities/urban life and would appear to be on a somewhat similar timeline. What I’ve read states that they plan to be around 500 employees by the end of 2023. Similar to the stated future size of the PolicyGenius operation here which is simply leasing a few floors in 555 Mangum. Cost certainly won’t be an issue in comparison to recruitment/employee experience and I’m sure CBC or Northwood would be overjoyed to land an anchor like that.
Regardless of where they end up, couldn’t be more excited to see this news and thrilled that Durham is really on the map now.
I understand where you’re coming from and definitely frustrated by the commentary around housing prices. This goes so much further than just some high priced jobs coming to Durham. But regardless, I don’t think you have much to fear. They are already planning to start hiring and expect to be 100-150 people here by year end. Don’t see anything derailing the project once they’ve gotten to the stage of making broad public announcements.
Concerns about housing prices seem perfectly valid to me. 1,000 high paid jobs aren't going to have a huge impact, but the main impact won't be the jobs themselves, rather the cachet associated with Durham (which, let me be clear, is a good thing).
Definitely don't want people to try and stop this, but we also shouldn't have our heads in the sand about tech jobs and housing costs.