Tesla is heading to Texas to build its largest auto assembly plant, CEO Elon Musk announced during the electric car company’s Q2 earnings call on Wednesday. Musk said that work is already underway on building the 2,100-acre site.
The factory will be in Travis County, near Austin, and will employ at least 5,000 people with a minimum wage of $15 per hour, according to The Associated Press. Tesla has said it will invest $1.1 billion.
Musk described the new gigafactory as “an ecological paradise” on the Colorado River, complete with a boardwalk and a biking and hiking trail. He said the site will be open to the public.
The company will use the site to build its new Cybertruck pickup, as well as the Model Y small SUV. Musk said that the company will produce “a lot” of vehicles in the “long term.” On its website, Tesla says Cybertruck production will begin in late 2021.
Over the next 10 years, Tesla will receive more than $60 million in tax breaks from the federal government and a local school district, according to the AP.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott welcomed Tesla to the state, saying the company is “one of the most exciting and innovative companies in the world, and we are proud to welcome its team to the State of Texas.”
“Texas has the best workforce in the nation and we’ve built an economic environment that allows companies like Tesla to innovate and succeed,” Abbott said in a press release. “Tesla’s Gigafactory Texas will keep the Texas economy the strongest in the nation and will create thousands of jobs for hard-working Texans. I look forward to the tremendous benefits that Tesla’s investment will bring to Central Texas and to the entire state.”
In a summary of Tesla’s Q2 update published on Wednesday, the company said that despite the main factory in Fremont, California, being closed for nearly half of the quarter due to the coronavirus pandemic, “business has shown strong resilience during unprecedented times.”
“We believe the progress we made in the first half of this year has positioned us for a successful second half of 2020. Production output of our existing facilities continues to improve to meet demand, and we are adding more capacity,” the company said. “Later this year, we will be building three factories on three continents simultaneously.”
Musk said during the earnings call that the California factory “will continue to grow.” Along with the new factory in Texas, Tesla is also building a factory in Germany, and has a factory in Shanghai.
Musk added that the company was “super impressed” by Tulsa, Oklahoma, which was also a top contender for Tesla’s new factory, and said that they will “strongly consider Tulsa for future expansions Tesla has down the road.”