Tesla Teases Tulsa

In the future, they’re going to call it The Tesla Tease. Or at least they should.

Despite our state’s best efforts to bend over and stroke the man’s ego, Elon Musk announced yesterday that Tesla Motors has chosen Austin over Tulsa to be the home of the company’s new futuristic factory.

The news isn’t very surprising. I don’t think any serious person thought Tulsa had a chance. In fact, that angle was the lede the local paper went with when breaking the news.

Via The Tulsa World:

The cynics — some might call them the realists — said Tulsa never had a shot at landing Tesla’s CyberTruck Gigafactory.

We’ll never know. But this much they got right: The electronic vehicle maker will build its latest production facility in Austin, Texas.

Or, as Elon Musk called the Austin site, an “ecological paradise.”

“We are going to make a factory that is going to be stunning,” Musk said during a meeting with investors and analysts Wednesday afternoon. ”It is right on the Colorado River, so we’re actually going to have a boardwalk where there will be a hiking, biking trail.

“It is going to basically be an ecological paradise. Birds in the trees, butterflies, fish in the stream, and it will be open to the public, as well.”

Holy shit. Tulsa’s pitch was the city had a big fucking field. Meanwhile, Austin is turning the Tesla campus into the set of Wild America. Tulsa never had a chance!

Of course, there were other factors that went into Tesla’s decision. Austin has a more educated workforce, no state income taxes, and better incentives. Plus, it’s not located in Oklahoma.

Naturally, Kevin Stitt tried to spin the news into a moral victory of sorts. Here’s his corporate-speech fluff response:

Screw the “Top 10 State” bullshit! Stitt’s new campaign theme should be Oklahoma – We’re Number 2!

Although it sucks Tulsa didn’t land a haymaker and get Tesla, Tulsan’s shouldn’t be too disappointed by the news. As a lifelong OKC resident, I know what it’s like to lose out on a nationwide job competition. Remember Micron Computer and United Airlines? They ditched OKC for Utah and Indianapolis – places that are even worse than Austin! – which helped motivated OKCto do all the MAPS stuff and eventually land an NBA team. Who knows. Maybe Tulsa will do the same and get their WNBA team back someday.