Amazon’s HQ2 Proposal Attracted 238 Separate Bids

Amazon has dominated the technology news landscape over the past week as bids for the e-commerce giant’s second headquarters were submitted, and that wide-reaching coverage is due in part to just how many cities want in.

Amazon revealed that they received 238 HQ2 proposals from regions all across North America with the final bids submitted on October 19. The RFP had a few constraints that should have limited the number of bidding cities, but that criteria seems to have been mostly ignored.

For example, Amazon wanted cities to have more than one million inhabitants, a population total that roughly 30 cities in North America can claim. Also, the company wanted a stable and business-friendly environment, a relatively ambiguous factor that lends itself to larger cities with a more robust economy of innovation, growth and development.

Still, cities from 54 total states, provinces, districts and territories applied. Amazon created a map highlighting which areas of North America took part. From Canada, every province sent in an application except for Saskatchewan, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island and Newfoundland and Labrador. None of the territories submitted applications.

In the U.S., every state except for North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, Wyoming, Montana, Hawaii and Arkansas submitted bids.

A few Mexican states also submitted bids. The northern state of Chihuahua as well as the south-eastern states Queretaro and Hidalgo saw bids come from cities within their limits. Interestingly enough, the largest city in North America, Mexico City, does not call any of these states home, meaning the city most likely did not submit a bid.

Cities did everything but put on a dog and pony show in order to attract Amazon’s attention, with Calgary getting a stadium full of fans to chant the company’s name and Birmingham hiding three giant delivery boxes around the city, to name a few of the more outlandish attempts.

Other cities simply resorted to elaborate love-letter style bids, like Toronto’s 190-page proposal, or Seattle—home to the current Amazon headquarters—throwing a massive 522-page bid into the ring.

It’s not like any of this is really over the top though, as the new Amazon HQ2 will bring in 50,000 high-paying jobs and a $5 billion investment. But, it might not all be good.

Amazon is expected to choose the “winning” city in 2018.