Amazon, the multinational online retail corporation owned by billionaire Jeff Bezos, is pledging to fund $2 billion worth of affordable housing projects in three United States cities after driving up home prices and rents.
This week, Amazon executives said they would be pledging $2 billion to build affordable housing projects across the suburbs of Seattle, Washington; Arlington, Virginia; and Nashville, Tennessee.
“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,” Bezos said in a statement. “It will also help local families achieve long-term stability while building strong, inclusive communities.”
The Amazon funding for affordable housing projects comes as the corporation has skyrocketed rents and home prices for locals where their headquarters are placed. For instance, Amazon helped increase northern Virginia home prices by four percent in a single year after announcing its HQ2 offices in the region.
Renters have also been hit with soaring prices. In 2019, CBS News reported that renters were seeing their costs increase by $100 to $150. At the same time, the average home price increased $110,000 over the course of a year, forcing some locals out of the area.
“Seattle’s experience is instructive. Since 2012, Amazon’s growing presence has coincided with the massive displacement of African American residents,” the group New Virginia Majority noted in a report.
“Home prices have risen by 350 percent,” the report continued. “Unless questions of housing density, affordability, and transit expansion are fully addressed, Amazon’s headquarters will lower the quality of life of many residents, with the most directly and adversely impacted being the area’s low-income communities of color.”
As Breitbart News reported, Bezos has majorly increased his profits during the Chinese coronavirus crisis as economic lockdowns have forced small and medium-sized businesses to close while Amazon has remained operating with more market consolidation.
From March 2020 to October 2020, Bezos’s wealth grew by nearly 80 percent from $113 billion to more than $203 billion. Likewise, Amazon’s third-quarter profits tripled from $2.1 billion in 2019 to $6.3 billion in 2020.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Follow him on Twitter at @JxhnBinder.