Story at a glance
- Amazon’s new Housing Equity Fund aims to create thousands of affordable housing units.
- The company is targeting its hubs in Virginia, Washington state and Tennessee.
E-commerce and technology behemoth Amazon announced its first round of funding toward its new Housing Equity Fund, featuring an investment of more than $567 million in a long-term plan to provide more affordable housing near its major offices.
Announced on Wednesday, the company intends to build about 1,300 apartment homes near its new second headquarters in Arlington, Va., along with roughly 1,000 apartment units available near the original Puget Sound headquarters in Washington state.
In the long term, the new Housing Equity fund aims to create more than 20,000 units of affordable housing, costing more than $2 billion.
This commitment is the company’s response to the jump in real estate prices accompanying its growth as Amazon brings talented workers to its locations with high-paying jobs. This tends to cause housing and rent prices to rise, displacing lower income residents.
“This new $2 billion Housing Equity Fund will create or preserve 20,000 affordable homes in all three of our headquarters regions—Arlington, Puget Sound, and Nashville. It will also help local families achieve long-term stability while building strong, inclusive communities,” said Jeff Bezos, Amazon founder and CEO, in the press release.
The fund will also expand inclusive housing through lower rates on home loans and partner with local nonprofits to preserve affordable housing options.