RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – The Triangle beat out major competition to make Amazon’s shortlist for its second headquarters, but it still must compete against 19 other cities.

The Triangle Business Journal is breaking down the area’s strengths and weaknesses compared with other possible locations in a new cover story called “So, who wins the amazon lottery?”

“We tried to look really deeply – what are the numbers for Raleigh and Durham and how does that compare. There’s some positives and there are some negatives,” said Dane Huffman, managing editor of the Triangle Business Journal.

On the plus side for the Triangle, Huffman points to North Carolina’s tax structure.

“The corporate tax rate is 3 percent and it’s going to drop to 2.5 percent. That’s one of the reasons Amazon is probably looking at us,” he said.

Huffman said to expect the state to offer a significant incentives package, much like it did for a proposed auto plant that went elsewhere.

“A billion and a half in the total package. So, you can expect something enormous for Amazon.”

While the Triangle’s tech talent, which Huffman said is 62,000 jobs strong, and multiple universities are attractive, he said other cities have even more.

Those resources in other places could help fill amazon’s order for people and space faster.

“So for example, Amazon wants 500,000-square feet of office space in 2019 – a year from now. Five hundred thousand square feet is the Wells Fargo tower in downtown Raleigh. That’s an enormous number of people. Other markets have more space available,” Huffman said.

Moving those people around the area is one of the major downsides for the Triangle’s bid, according to Huffman.

“In their requests for proposals, they are clearly saying, ‘What kind of mass transit do you have?’ We essentially don’t have it in the Triangle. Now we have a plan in Wake County, but basically don’t have it. That’s a big issue,” he said.

“When you really put pen to paper, you realize we’re playing in the majors. We’re playing in the majors in this one. And these major league cities like Atlanta, Washington, Chicago, they have significant resources that they’re going to throw at this.”

And if the Triangle lands Amazon, the area gets more people and more jobs – up to 50,000 more.

Huffman said it would grow from a metro of 1.3 million to 2 million rapidly, which would put demands on roads and schools.

He points to how expensive Amazon’s home city of Seattle has gotten.

“It would change the way Raleigh looks and feels in a matter of years.”

The Triangle Business Journal’s cover story on Amazon is out Friday.WHAT OTHERS ARE CLICKING ON: