According to the brandenburg state chancellery, the settlement of the US electric car manufacturer tesla in grunheide (or spree) is another step closer.
The company’s management board has approved the purchase agreement with the state of brandenburg for the acquisition of the roughly 300-hectare plot of land, according to government spokesman florian engels. Tesla wants to build his factory on the land. The finance committee of the brandenburg state parliament had already approved the purchase agreement.
In grunheide near berlin, starting in the summer of 2021, an annual number of 150.000 model 3 and Y electric cars to be built, after expansion up to 500.000 vehicles a year. The purchase price for the forest land near grunheide (or-spree district) had been estimated by the state forestry enterprise at just under 41 million euros, but a further independent expert opinion is still pending. The final purchase price is to be adjusted to the result of this second survey, if it comes to a different land value.
The area, which is designated as industrial land, is currently being examined for explosive ordnance from the second world war. According to the state chancellery, there are most likely US blindgangers there. That’s why the municipality of grunheide banned people from entering the land.
Tesla’s settlement in grunheide is the subject of controversy among burghers. On saturday, according to police reports, around 200 people demonstrated in the community against the settlement of the US company – more participants than expected. According to the police, a demonstration against the planned factory had been announced with up to 100 participants. "No coarse factory in the forest" and "secret negotiations – environment polluted" were written on posters. The citizens protested, among other things, against the clearing of the forest for the rough land on which the factory is to be built. Also on sunday, according to a report in the "markische oderzeitung", about 80 people demonstrated against the settlement of the car manufacturer with a forest walk.
Another demonstration for the tesla settlement was attended by about 30 people in the community on saturday, according to a police spokesperson. According to the organizers, however, there were about 50 participants, including many families with children. Transparent signs read "elon, i would like a car from you" or "design instead of prevent." Some residents from the region had come with their tesla vehicles.
Anke kranhold, whose family has lived in grunheide for four generations, was among the supporters of a tesla settlement. "I myself have sons and two daughters-in-law who are engineers, so maybe in the future they’ll have a chance to ride their bikes to work instead of commuting to berlin," the 46-year-old told the german press agency on saturday.
"Why does it all have to go so bumpy," a tesla opponent told a dpa reporter in grunheide. It’s all happening too fast. Another demonstrator said: "here comes a billionaire from the U.S., waving his banknotes, and all of a sudden everything is possible in brandenburg. Opponents of the construction of the tesla factory also fear, among other things, that the drinking water supply could be at risk. The land of the planned factory is located in a drinking water protection zone.
When a train of tesla opponents passed by the supporters, there were brief verbal confrontations. Both sides insulted each other. The police were on the scene with a large number of officers. The situation calmed down again afterwards.
Brandenburg’s minister of economics, jorg steinbach (SPD), expressed incomprehension for the tesla skeptics in the "markische oderzeitung" (saturday). Willingness to embrace change is not universal, he told the paper. "We have a rough insistence mentality". People want their kids to stop moving away for good jobs. There should be good jobs at home – but not in the form of a factory, not in front of your own house, said steinbach. So far, he has found the reactions of the people in grunheide to be very constructive, he says.