Jeff Bezos will be able to helicopter to Amazon’s New York headquarters

Clear skies over Long Island City—for now.
Clear skies over Long Island City—for now.
Image: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz
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The 7 train is safe. Well, perhaps. A memorandum from New York officials teases a glamorous alternative to the already overstuffed subway line that serves Amazon’s new Queens neighborhood: Jumping in a helicopter.

The state Urban Development Corporation, the city Economic Development Corporation and the mayor’s office will help Amazon “secure access to a helipad on the Development Sites,” states the memo, dated yesterday (Nov. 12). If for some reason they can’t, officials say they will help the company get one “in an alternative location in reasonable proximity to the Development Sites” in Long Island City, where Amazon intends to build one of its two new headquarters.

Unfortunately, not even Jeff Bezos will be able to chopper in whenever he wants. A helipad comes with certain responsibilities, including a limit of no more than 120 landings a year. Joy rides are also verboten, with all flights and landings for corporate use only—and those flights must be “exclusively over water or the Development Sites.” (Realtors in swish Murray Hill, which lies directly across the East River in Manhattan and features a heliport, take note.)

So while some Manhattan-based Amazon employees (or visiting staff staying in hotels there) may be able to commute to the new company headquarters via helicopter, instead of the subway or the Q32 bus, it’s probably better not to bank on it. Either way, Queens residents probably shouldn’t expect to share their commute with the world’s richest man any time soon.