Amazon's top office picks offer blank slates for urban revivals

Foto: Ina Fassbender/picture-alliance/dpa/AP Images

Emerging from the Crystal City Metro station in Arlington, Virginia, the state of the local property market is etched in bold colors on tarps draped over vacant office towers.

The vivid shapes, a contrast to the neighborhood's bureaucratic '60s architecture, are a signal flare to future tenants sent up by the buildings' owner. Locals assume the colorful banners are aimed at catching the attention of, on a yearlong, nationwide quest for a second headquarters. And they may have worked...

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