ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – LeBron James has signed with the Cavaliers, now the nation’s next biggest mystery is back in the spotlight: which state will Tesla pick for its gigafactory?
The speculation has consumed many in New Mexico for months. But a general search of newspaper and TV news stories shows the electric car company is fueling a huge rumor mill, and not just in New Mexico
As Tesla is trying to decided where it will build its and who’s going to get the 6,500 good jobs that come with it, the rumors are growing out of control all over the Southwest U.S.
In March 2014, Governor Susana Martinez exclaimed, “look at this!” at an event where she got to see one of the cars for the first time in person.
The man who owned the car, Duane Ross of Albuquerque said “It would be a wonderful thing,” in response to the idea of Tesla building the factory in New Mexico.
In June, Albuquerque resident John Edward offered Tesla a free parcel of land in Albuquerque to build the gigafactory on, saying “I think it would be giga-normous.”
The conversation about where Tesla will build its $5 billion battery making gigafactory has captivated a huge audience. It’s been the jobs topic for months and might just be the biggest kept secret in the U.S.
For New Mexico, it has politicians talking.
“The fact that New Mexico is at least in the ball game should be very encouraging,” said Jon Barela in March 2013. Barela is the Secretary of Economic Development for the state of New Mexico.
And while it might feel like New Mexico is the only one buzzing about it, but you’d be wrong. The gigafactory hype has taken over virtually everyone of the five states on Tesla’s final list.
Phoenix news stations have reported about, San Antonio stations have gone as far as to say that Reno and San Antonio are the only two cities that are “really” in the running.
That’s just the tip of the iceberg though. An online search shows Tesla articles in California, Nevada, Arizona and Texas.
The latest headline comes from Dallas. That’s where Tesla is now rumored to be eyeing 700 acres of empty land south of the city. The story is based on a mere warning from a city official that transportation improvements may be needed in the undeveloped area in the near future.
It’s not just speculation either. There’s also some trash-talking going on.
Reno’s Mayor recently told Texas that they would “lose” the Tesla race.
That came after Texas’ Governor drove to a meeting with Tesla, in a Tesla car and lobbied the company in California.
“What I think would make it even prettier is if it had a made in Texas bumper sticker on it,” said Texas Gov. Rick Perry during the visit.
California lawmakers then punched back, recently traveling to Texas to publicly announce that Tesla and maybe some other Texas companies should choose California.
“I believe in friendly competition,” said California state Senator Ted Gaines during his visit to Texas.
The bickering makes one thing clear: the competition for Tesla has everyone talking, everywhere.
What’s also fueled all of this rumor and speculation is that Tesla was already supposed to pick the location of its gigafactory by now. The company now says it will make the choice by the end of the year.
Once Tesla chooses a site, it wants the massive solar and wind powered plant built quickly. The plant is supposed to supply the batteries for the affordable electric sedan it wants to start mass-producing by 2017.