Tesla plans $3.6B expansion in Nevada

Electric vehicle manufacturer will build out its Semi electric truck and battery production

Tesla's Elon Musk (Getty)
Tesla's Elon Musk (Getty)

For electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla, not everything is about shareholder lawsuits and controversies surrounding its mercurial owner, Elon Musk.

The company announced last week that it’s investing more than $3.6 billion to expand its Nevada manufacturing facility, including a factory to mass produce its Semi electric truck, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The expansion will include a new factory for its battery — to the tune of batteries for 2 million light-duty vehicles annually — and electric-vehicle-component production. Altogether, the two new facilities will add about 3,000 jobs, the outlet reported.

Initially introduced in 2017, the Semi has been long-delayed, with its first delivery taking place in December, according to CNN. The 18-wheel truck has a 500-mile range and can haul up to 81,000 pounds, the outlet reported.

It’s the second major expansion Tesla has announced this month. Two weeks ago, the company signed a lease for more than 1 million square feet in the building at 111 Empire Boulevard in Brookshire. The Fortune 500 company will occupy Building 9 in the Empire West Business Park in the Houston suburb.

Neither the developer/landlord, Stream Realty Partners, nor Tesla have spoken about the project, but Brookshire officials said the company has been in contact with the city to permit the space.

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Tesla’s main Texas facility is located in Austin. There, the company has proposed more than $700 million in new construction for its Giga Texas property. Plans call for 1.4 million square feet across four new buildings. Construction could begin as early as the end of next month.

Tesla’s plans to move to Brookshire could help the Houston-area city bring in more industrial and auto developers.

“That will give us bragging rights,” Barnes told the Houston Chronicle. “A company of international renown like Tesla choosing Brookshire, Texas, really helps us diversify and enhances greater Houston’s standing in the global marketplace.”

Last year, Musk announced plans to open up to a dozen new plants to increase production, according to the Wall Street Journal.

— Ted Glanzer

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