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Walsh Says The Amazon Bid Is Focused On An East Boston Site

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh in October, 2015. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)MoreCloseclosemore
Boston Mayor Marty Walsh in October, 2015. (Jesse Costa/WBUR)

Boston Mayor Marty Walsh told WBUR's Radio Boston Wednesday that the city's bid for Amazon is focused on East Boston, and that his administration intends to release the proposal publicly on Friday.

"We have it finalized. I just signed the letter today, the final letter," Walsh said.

He said the bid is focused on one location: East Boston, specifically in an area "not too far from the airport."

When a woman from East Boston called in to the show to ask a question, she told the mayor, "I'm assuming that you're alluding to the Suffolk Downs site for Amazon ..." and the mayor winked.

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WBUR poll earlier this month found that a majority of likely voters in Boston (66 percent) support the city's efforts to pursue Amazon, but that comes with a caveat: A majority (59 percent) also want details of the city's bid made public.

The WBUR poll also found that Bostonians are divided on whether the company should receive tax breaks from the city and state. Forty-five percent support tax incentives, while 45 percent oppose the idea.

Walsh told WBUR that this first iteration of the Amazon bid does not include tax incentives. "We didn't put any tax incentives in this piece right now," he said. "It's too early in the process."

This is in contrast to other proposals, such as Worcester, which plans to offer some half a billion dollars in tax incentives to lure Amazon.

The state of Massachusetts, which is filing a separate bid, plans to release its submission by the end of this week.

But, in the interim, its neighbor New Hampshire has released its own bid, which takes quite a few jabs at the state, its traffic, its subway system and its high cost of housing.

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Asma Khalid Twitter Reporter
Asma Khalid leads WBUR's BostonomiX - a new biz/tech team covering the innovation economy.

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