Op-Ed: Bringing Elon Musk and the Tesla Headquarters to NYC

Elon Musk on stage with NVIDIA CEO and co-founder Jen-Hsun Huang with text "Tesla, Elon Musk" on the back
Photo credit: NVIDIA Corporation (licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

For a city purported to ‘never sleep’ as Frank Sinatra sings, or a ‘Concrete jungle where dreams are made of’ as Alicia Keys wrote, the candidates running for mayor – and our current mayor – are hardly inspirational.

Theirs is a race to the bottom. They speak of institutional racism, income inequities, affordable housing for all and the over-policed state which are all well and good, but now is not the time to continue the de Blasio tale of two cities – one rich, one poor – narrative. This might have worked for the past eight years, but not when we as a city are in a tailspin between the COVID pandemic, falling tax revenue and an anemic economy. 

It’s time we start thinking as one city. We either rise together or fall together. And that starts with big, brash in-your-face ideas to match our city’s collective soul and moniker  – The Big Apple.

Here’s an idea: Why not reach out to Elon Musk and pitch Tesla and Space X bringing their corporate sales office here? Currently, these offices are in Los Angeles – the city where residents’ idea of hustle and bustle is showing up at a Dodgers game in the third inning and leaving in the seventh to avoid traffic. 

But consider this for a moment Mr. Musk. While you’re stuck in traffic on an LA freeway or twanging it up under the broiling sun at your new residence in Austin, Texas, you can’t beat a global international and financial center like New York City. If you want to sell Tesla and establish dealerships in Europe and the Far East, this is the place top do it.

Ditto for Space X. You want to establish a tourism business into outer space or a shuttle industry for satellites, New York City is the place to wine and dine potential clients. Give them a real lunchtime urban experience in Bed-Stuy where Biggie and Jay-Z grew up during the day and then take them to the Broadway theater at night. You’ll have them signing on the dotted line in the morning.

And bringing Musk to the city will even get the stamp of approval from the progressive and climate change police. Tesla operate on batteries and no fossil fuel to be had. And with Musk’s engineering and creative skill, perhaps he’ll even help figure a way to get U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler’s Cross-Harbor tunnel finally built.

Bringing Elon Musk and his corporate headquarters to New York City is just one idea, but there are many others in the ether – some good and some not good but all worth considering. My vote for mayor will be for the candidate that has vision for the grand possibilities as well as empathy for the downtrodden. 

After all, we’re the Empire State where people come from all over the world to make things happen. And if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere!

(This article was originally posted on our sister site, Kings County Politics.)

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