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Touring the Amazon campus ahead of HQ2 decision

SEATTLE, Wash. – Amazon will soon pick a second headquarters and St. Louis is among more than 230 cities vying for HQ2. Fox 2 News traveled to Seattle to find out what it’s like to work for the online merchandise and delivery company.

The three huge glass spheres at Amazon have become a stop for tourists. The domes are full of plants from around the world; a team of horticulturists takes care of them.

When the spheres open, employees will find a nice place to work.

“There’s been a lot of scientific research that shows when you’re surrounded by nature or plants or greenery, your brain works maybe a little more creatively, a little more differently,” said Allison Flicker, a spokeswoman for Amazon.

Flicker took our Fox 2 News crew on a tour of the Amazon facility. The first stop was a building called Day 1, named for the mantra of company founder Jeff Bezos, who believes every day is ‘Day 1’ at Amazon.

“Because we’re always inventing something new, trying something different, innovating on behalf of our customers,” Flicker said.

One of the first things you notice inside the campus are the dogs – lots of dogs.

Approximately 4,000 dog owners have signed up to bring their pup to work at Amazon. With so many dogs they also have dog parks.

“We think it is a fun and special part of our culture and employees really love it,” Flicker said.

The next thing you realize while on the tour: no one is dressed up.

“It’s not about how you dress, it’s about the work that you do and the impact you made,” said Kathleen Carroll, the North American job recruiter for Amazon.

There are plenty of open spaces to work or hold meetings, the exact opposite of a closed-up office.

Many of the Amazon buildings have places to eat, but they can only serve 30 percent of the workforce. Employees are encouraged to go out for lunch and create vibrant neighborhoods with shops and restaurants. It seems to be working. Amazon spokesman Adam Sedo said 3,000 small businesses have been created because of Amazon.

More than 40,000 people work at Amazon in Seattle; the campus includes more than 30 buildings.

There are special places, prayer rooms, nursing rooms for moms, and an art studio for fun and work. The company has two banana stands on campus and free fruit for everyone. It’s part of the company’s good neighbor policy.

“We do have a significant amount of office space in Seattle for sure,” Sedo said.

More than eight million square-feet and the company is still growing. One of the new office buildings will also include a homeless shelter that will care for 200 people (about 65 families).

Meanwhile, Amazon officials wouldn’t say a word about HQ2 and the selection process.