Elon Musk predicts Austin, Texas, will be ‘the biggest boomtown that America has seen in 50 years’

‘Megaboom,’ Musk said. Maja Hitij/Getty Images
  • Elon Musk thinks Austin, Texas, is the next big thing, he said.
  • The city will be the “biggest boomtown” the US has had in 50 years, he said on Joe Rogan’s podcast.
  • The Tesla CEO moved to Texas after spats with California’s public-health officials.
  • Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.

It’s no secret that Tesla CEO Elon Musk is over California.

Last summer, Musk chose Austin, Texas, as the spot for the $US1 billion factory that would build the Cybertruck, the carmaker’s long-awaited electric pickup truck. And in December, he confirmed rumours that he was picking up and moving from Los Angeles to the Lone Star State.

During an interview on “The Joe Rogan Experience” podcast that droppedThursday, Musk said he thought Austin had huge potential beyond just hosting him and his new factory.

“It’s going to be the biggest boomtown that America has seen in 50 years, at least — megaboom,” Musk said.

The CEO said Tesla chose Austin as the spot for the carmaker’s next US plant because “Austin is a bit like mini California.” According to Musk, he asked Tesla’s team in California what its top choice would be for a new factory — where it would like to spend time — and the “No. 1 choice was Austin.”

Read more:
Elon Musk and other tech powerhouses are flocking to Texas, pushing an already bonkers real-estate market to new heights. Take a look inside Austin, which is quickly becoming the next Silicon Valley.

Musk announced his move to Texas after public spats in 2020 with California’s public-health officials over COVID-19 restrictions that temporarily shuttered Tesla’s Fremont, California, plant.

“Tesla will now move its HQ and future programs to Texas/Nevada immediately,” he tweeted in May during a disagreement with local officials.

During a call with investors in April, Musk went on a tirade criticising California’s shelter-in-place measures as “fascist” and saying that officials were “forcibly imprisoning” people in their homes.

Looser government regulations in Texas — along with no state income tax — appear to be an incentive for Musk’s move. But the billionaire said the wave of West Coasters moving to Austin should take care not to change the city too much.

“I think we do need to make sure that … people who move here from California don’t inadvertently recreate the issues that caused them to move in the first place,” Musk said during Thursday’s interview.

An increasing number of business leaders and companies have moved out of traditional hubs like Silicon Valley to Texas, as the pandemic has forced many people to work remotely.

Late last year, the software giant Oracle said it would move its headquarters from California to Austin. The Information reported Dropbox CEO Drew Houston was moving to the city as well, and Palantir cofounder Joe Lonsdale said he would move his venture capital firm, 8VC, there too.