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Amazon continues construction on Puget Sound tower

Amazon Sonic building interior
The water vapor fireplace in the Amazon Sonic building.

Amazon is moving ahead with a major workspace expansion in Bellevue, Wash.

The e-tail giant is continuing construction on the remaining 22 floors at its office building known as "Sonic" located in Bellevue. This will provide an additional 500,000 square feet of collaborative workspace in Bellevue. Once complete later in 2024, Sonic is designed to provide space for more than 4,500 employees total.

In December 2023, Amazon announced that 1,000 employees had moved into the first half of Sonic, also known as Tower 555. Then in February 2024, it marked the opening of its next building, in its “Puget Sound headquarters,” Dynamo, bringing an additional 1,500 employees to Bellevue, Washington.

Amazon now operates nine office buildings in Bellevue employing more than 12,500 workers, with plans to bring 25,000 jobs there in total, following an initial building and hiring initiative the company launched there in 2020. Amazon began in the Bellevue garage of founder Jeff Bezos in July 1994.

In addition to investing in its Puget Sound headquarters, Amazon has committed to supporting causes involving the local community. Since 2021, the company says it has donated over $174 million to local charitable groups and nonprofit organizations.

Sonic - a closer look

Named after the project codename for launching Prime free same-day delivery in Canada and France, the Sonic building currently (pre-expansion) provides 19 floors of working space across more than 400,000 sq. ft.

Sonic features "team suites," rooms equipped with a variety of seating and meeting options like whiteboarding areas, living room lounge setups, breakout discussion rooms, phone booths, conference-style board rooms and traditional desk seating.

The different seating options are designed to allow teams to transition seamlessly from focused individual work into a brainstorm session or from a document review into a smaller breakout with their manager. Teams can book suites for a day, a week, or a month.

"Amazon's continued investment in Bellevue is another show of confidence that our city is growing and open for business," said Joe Fain, president and CEO of the Bellevue Chamber, in an Amazon corporate blog post. "Nearly 80% of polled residents shared that the growth that Amazon and other tech companies have brought to Bellevue has been good for the city. As the office market across the globe continues to show signs of post-pandemic strain, Bellevue is bucking the trend and breathing fresh life into its downtown."

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