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St. Louis leaders making ‘competitive proposal’ for $5 billion Amazon St. Louis headquarters

Amazon has announced plans to open a second headquarters in North America that will employ as many as 50,000 workers.

The company announced Thursday that it is searching for a city to host the new "HQ2" facility, which will cost at least $5 billion to construct and operate.

St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson tweets, "Yes, we are on it."  She tells FOX 2 that, "We are putting together a team to make a competitive bid for Amazon's second headquarters."

St. Louis County Executive Steve Stenger says he is working with Krewson to bring the next Amazon headquarters to the area.

A press conference by Governor Eric Greitens after noon on Thursday could shed more light on the proposal.  He is expected to announce several hundred new Missouri jobs.  Reporters will be asking about an Amazon proposal.

Cities and regional economic development organizations have been invited to submit proposals, and they will likely scramble to offer incentives and tax breaks for Amazon to consider their area.

"We expect HQ2 to be a full equal to our Seattle headquarters," said Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos. "Amazon HQ2 will bring billions of dollars in up-front and ongoing investments, and tens of thousands of high-paying jobs. We're excited to find a second home."

Amazon said it would prefer to open the headquarters in a suburban or urban area with more than 1 million people. It's looking for a community that "thinks big" and a location that will attract technical talent.

The company said that while it would hire teams and executives for the new location, employees who currently work in Seattle would be offered the chance to relocate.

Amazon estimates that its investments in Seattle from 2010 to 2016 added $38 billion to the city's economy. These investments include retail space in its buildings and public spaces such as parks. Its headquarters in Seattle boasts 33 buildings and 24 restaurants or cafes. It covers 8.1 million square feet.

The announcement of Amazon's second headquarters is a part of a larger effort from Amazon to grow its footprint at home and abroad.

In January, the company announced plans to create over 100,000 new full-time jobs in the U.S. It's been steadily announcing new fulfillment centers.

Amazon also recently closed its $13.7 billion deal to buy Whole Foods as it expands into the groceries market and brick-and-mortar stores. Meanwhile, it will start selling its branded smart home devices at Amazon bookstores and retailers like Kohl's soon.

Missouri Governor Eric Greitens will be giving a press conference at noon.