The possibility of Tesla opening a battery factory in Reno has been the hot topic lately, and it’s no surprise. Tesla’s decision to move here would change this area dramatically. First, they would bring 6,500 skilled jobs to the region, which will lower our unemployment rate and remove Nevada from the top of the unemployment list. The bigger discussion is the ripple effect those jobs will have on the region. The facility by itself is supposed to be 10 million square feet, and therefore the construction industry will be the first to benefit from the decision. Once the facility is built, all 6,500 employees will need support businesses, which will create more jobs. Support businesses could be anything: dry cleaning, entertainment, home improvement, etc. The RGJ posted article that estimated 6,500 jobs would bring a total of 15,500 jobs.
In addition to the obvious job impact, there could be implications in unknown markets. Support businesses for Tesla would likely pop up, bringing additional skilled jobs in the lithium battery manufacturing field, among others. This could assist in creating the landscape entrepreneurs in Reno are dreaming of. If new businesses can emerge from Tesla’s decision, it could put Reno on the map as an entrepreneurial hub. In addition to attracting entrepreneurs, Tesla’s decision would likely attract other businesses. In fact, the publicity they are already generating isn’t bad for Reno. They would increase our list of existing corporations: Apple, Patagonia, Amazon, Microsoft and more. This would also assist in bettering Reno’s reputation.
Tesla’s decision would not come with out some negative impacts: We currently have very low inventory in the housing market. This low inventory has caused housing prices to increase quickly. This is good for homeowners, as many will see their equity restored, or rising. However it’s bad for buyer’s because it will increase competition, and even push some buyer’s out of the market. For example: If a buyer is qualified up to a $150k purchase price and housing prices increase significantly, that person may not be able to find anything. If Tesla’s decision has an immediate effect on average income, qualification may not be a problem. But I don’t think Tesla’s decision will cause other employers to increase wages, at least in the short term. Schools and freeways will also become more crowded, as well as ski resorts. Overall I think Tesla in Reno would bring many more benefits than problems. If you think Tesla in Reno would be a good thing, pat yourself on the back. If you think it would be a bad thing, punch yourself in the face. I’m just kidding, don’t do that. Maybe you can just leave me a comment and explain your logic.