When Uber announced plans to expand its operations to Dallas, the city was eager to welcome the company. In February, Uber retained recruiters to fill up its new office space in Deep Ellum. The company halted construction until at least 2021, though it does not expect to hire more than 3,000 employees at that time. To fill the space, Uber subleased office space in the city's Epic I building. According to the Dallas Regional Chamber, the city's tech scene has helped Uber grow, and the expansion of Amazon's second headquarters laid the groundwork for the company's arrival in the area.
Rather than investing in a new headquarters in San Francisco, Texas's state government is working with the transportation company to create incentives for the company's expansion. In an effort to lure Uber, the state approved incentives totaling $36 million for the company to move to Dallas. The incentives will include bike and pedestrian infrastructure. The company is also planning to expand globally and have a major presence in Dallas. The city also has the nation's fourth largest tech workforce.
Last year, the city and Uber agreed to a $9.3 million incentive deal for new jobs in Deep Ellum, but this deal was not fulfilled. The city and the company reportedly failed to create 2,500 jobs. After all, the company still expects to keep its Dallas office open, but its head count is likely to be reduced to 400 or 500 people. Instead of hiring 2,500 new employees, the city is receiving an additional $25,000 in taxes from the company.
A new headquarters in Dallas is the next step for Uber's expansion. The ride-hailing company hopes to expand its operations to the United States and make Dallas the largest hub outside of San Francisco. The company will hire 400 additional employees or relocate about 400 existing ones in Dallas this year. The company plans to open its Dallas office in July 2020 and expand the space to two towers. When it opens its Dallas office, it will have 3,000 employees working there.
Besides hiring local staff, Uber has also hired a group of Carnegie Mellon University professors to expand its self-driving vehicle tests on public roads. In November, the company plans to map the streets of downtown Dallas. At first, Uber employees will manually drive white Volvo SUVs with self-driving technology, while computer simulations will test the technology. Uber plans to expand testing in three markets by 2023, including Dallas.
In addition to its office in Dallas, the ride-hailing giant also has offices in Seattle, Chicago, New York, Washington, D.C., Pittsburgh, and San Francisco. The company recently signed a 10-year lease for a 463,000-square-foot office in Chicago, but the company has not announced how many employees it will hire in the city. The company plans to occupy four-fifths of the company's 500,000-square-foot building in Dallas' Deep Ellum neighborhood.