Tesla Giga Texas expansion project for ‘ecological paradise’ gains approval

Credit: Tesla

Tesla’s Giga Texas expansion project, which will make way for an “ecological paradise” open to the public just outside the automotive production facility, has been approved by the City of Austin.

On September 21, we originally reported that Tesla was planning to revise its original application for Giga Texas, showing a proposed expansion of the site. The Limits of Construction (LOC) in both acreage and square footage had increased by 12 acres and 500,000 square feet, as shown in documents seen by Teslarati. Acreage increased from 268 to 280, while square footage expanded from 11,674,080, to 12,196,800.

Documents did not outline what the expansion would be used for, but as Giga Texas is expected to build hundreds of thousands of vehicles per year, we speculated it could be to increase production output in the coming years. However, Tesla CEO Elon Musk told us that it the expansion was filed to make way for the “ecological paradise” the automaker planned to build on-site, which will essentially act as a public park.

Musk also indicated that while Tesla did file to expand Giga Texas, the project won’t begin immediately. Instead, Giga Texas needs to be financially “on its feet,” as Musk stated earlier this year that both this factory and Giga Berlin, the other site Tesla gained operational approval for this year, were “gigantic money furnaces.”

Musk said in 2020, when Tesla announced that it would build its newest factory in Texas just outside Austin, that the plant would have an “ecological paradise” that would feature a boardwalk and other activities to highlight the areas surrounding the factory. Musk reiterated to Teslarati that this was still the plan, as well as a path that would allow visitors to walk, bike, or kayak to downtown Austin. Musk also stated Tesla could develop an electric boat for the Colorado River, which would be available to visitors for potential travel into the City.

Tesla can move forward with the project whenever as of now, as the City of Austin approved the project just eight days after Tesla initially filed it. The proposed application was examined and passed all relevant processes, including a Mapping Review, Addressing Review, Environmental Assessment, and Drainage Plan, among several others. The overall Site Plan review was completed on September 28.

Be sure to check back to Teslarati for updates on this project. As it moves forward, we will be following the application and development of the site.

I’d love to hear from you! If you have any comments, concerns, or questions, please email me at joey@teslarati.com. You can also reach me on Twitter @KlenderJoey, or if you have news tips, you can email us at tips@teslarati.com.

Joey Klender: Joey has been a journalist covering electric mobility at TESLARATI since August 2019. In his time at TESLARATI, Joey has broken several big stories, including the first images of the Tesla Model S Plaid, the imminent release of the 4680 Model Y through EPA certification, and several expansions to the Lucid AMP-1 factory in Arizona, to name a few. His stories have been featured in several publications, including Yahoo! Finance, Fox News, CNET, and Seeking Alpha. In his spare time, Joey is playing golf, watching MMA, or cheering on any of his favorite sports teams, including the Baltimore Ravens and Orioles, Miami Heat, Washington Capitals, and Penn State Nittany Lions. You can get in touch with joey at joey@teslarati.com. He is also on Twitter @KlenderJoey.
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