Amazon Progress (George Freeman)

Amazon: Looking Out for Corporate Citizen #1

Member Local Politics, Seattle, Social Justice

It has now been 10 years since Amazon decided to move into South Lake Union, and things have changed more drastically than anyone could have imagined. Employing more than 40,000 people, and spread over 37 offices, it has far exceeded the estimates of city planners when it started off. The large sums of money pumped into the neighborhood would lead one to believe that the investment Amazon brought in was a blessing, however, the inhabitants and the businesses of Seattle tend to disagree.

As Amazon continues to dominate the Seattle skyline, with greater expansive ambitions for the years to come, it has caused enormous traffic problems for the locals, and caused the property prices have soared, giving rise to housing-related angst in the neighborhood.

” Seattle has historically proved to have a strong egalitarian ethos, one which the locals take pride in and describe to be one of the city’s greatest commodities. Amazon, however, is seen to be tipping the balance against these altruistic values and giving rise to an environment where wealth is disproportionally accumulating among the rich. “

Seattle has historically proved to have a strong egalitarian ethos, one which the locals take pride in and describe to be one of the city’s greatest commodities. Amazon, however, is seen to be tipping the balance against these altruistic values and giving rise to an environment where wealth is disproportionally accumulating among the rich. These grievances seem justified when we look into the organization’s philanthropic patterns. In an article last year from the Seattle Times, they cite Amazon’s record of philanthropy over the years, notably in 2012 Amazon’s generosity to local charities and non-profits was virtually non-existent. Companies like Microsoft and Boeing had donated $4 million and $3 million, respectively. We hope that does not represent a pattern.

 Local businesses, like Daddy’s G, a classic Italian Kitchen situated in the heart of the SODO district and owned by George Freeman, see Amazon’s encroachment as a warning sign.

Amazon’s questionable track record can be further seen in the state of the businesses it lured in to serve the neighborhood it created around its headquarters. Local businesses, like Daddy’s G, a classic Italian Kitchen situated in the heart of the SODO district and owned by George Freeman, see Amazon’s encroachment as a warning sign. As a long time Seattleite, George witnessed the challenges business owners face while doing business near an Amazon building. It would seem here’s not enough momentum around for small mom and pop shops to sustain a healthy Amazon's Unprecedented Growth Image Courtesy of CBInsightsbusiness. This is making it harder and harder for small business to keep believing in the “18-hour” (see “Amazon Invented Neighborhood to Serve its Seattle Headquarters) neighborhood that they were promised by the electronic commerce giant.