Inside Teslaville: Elon Musk to build US’s first solar-powered town near Austin

·2-min read
SunHouse at Easton Park aims to be a model for large-scale  sustainable housing projects across the globe (Brookfield Residential)
SunHouse at Easton Park aims to be a model for large-scale sustainable housing projects across the globe (Brookfield Residential)

The first Tesla Solar neighbourhood is to be built near Austin, Texas, and aims to be the US’s “most sustainable residential community”.

SunHouse at Easton Park will be a collaboration between Tesla Energy, Brookfield Asset Management and real estate developer Dacra. The new sustainable residential community will have V3 solar roof tiles, Powerwall battery storage and, of course, plenty of charging points for Tesla electric cars.

“Neighbourhood solar installations across all housing types will reshape how people live,” said Tesla CEO Elon Musk in a statement. “The feedback we get from the solar and battery products used in this community will impact how we develop and launch new products.”

The housing project began construction in June, and sustainable features will be installed in phases, some of which may benefit the wider community. The self-sufficient neighbourhood will not need to tap into the electric grid and could potentially deliver power for broader public use and needs. There will also be backup storage in the event of a power outage in the community.

“The City of Austin is excited for the arrival of these affordable options to housing powered by renewable energy,” said Austin Mayor Steve Adler. “I am excited for the Tesla, Brookfield, and Dacra partnership’s approach to sustainable energy and housing as an example of the out-of-box thinking that continues to make our community a beacon of innovation for the rest of the country and world.”

The electric carmaker also chose Texas to be the home of the Tesla Gigafactory 5, where the new Tesla Cybertrucks and the Tesla Semis will be made, along with Model 3 and Model Y cars. The gigafactory is scheduled to be operational by late 2021.

In addition, Tesla is building a $7 billion (£5 billion) gigafactory in Gruenheide, near Berlin, Germany, which is likely to open in 2022. The company has said it will be the “most advanced high-volume electric vehicle production plant in the world”, with the potential to make 500,000 cars per year.

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