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Watch: Norfolk Southern will move headquarters to Atlanta

NORFOLK, Va. - After 36 years in Norfolk, railroad giant Norfolk Southern will move its headquarters to Atlanta.

Gov. Northam said he spoke with the CEO of Norfolk Southern on Wednesday morning and was informed of the decision. A formal announcement followed later in the day.

"We're sorry they've decided to move," Northam said. "They're looking at their options down in Atlanta with a new building."

Norfolk Southern chairman, president and Chief Executive Officer Jim Squires said, “Norfolk Southern is grateful to the City of Norfolk and the Commonwealth of Virginia for their support of our company over the last three plus decades. We look forward to the continued growth of our business in the Commonwealth as the many operating employees who remain serve the customers and promote economic development in this integral part of our network," to employees Wednesday.

Click here to read the entire statement released by Norfolk Southern.

The announcement comes a week after Atlanta approved nearly $24 million in tax breaks on the company's planned $575 million investment to consolidate operations and relocate its headquarters to that city's Midtown neighborhood.

The move would be a loss for Norfolk, where Norfolk Southern currently occupies a downtown space with around 500 employees.

Norfolk Mayor Kenny Alexander says the company is obligated to keep a presence in the city through 2026.

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