Scoop: Tesla buys test track in 35-acre deal

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Tesla Motors Inc. has bought about 35 acres in Fremont adjacent to its factory from Union Pacific Railroad, giving the company more room to vroom its electric cars on a test track there.

Tesla closed on the deal this week, according to records on file at the Alameda County Clerk Recorder’s office.

The property is located south of the Tesla plant, near the intersection of Mission Boulevard and the UP rail line.

We’d love to know what Tesla paid for the property, but I wasn’t able to determine a purchase price Friday morning.

Telsa is perhaps the obvious choice. The land includes more than half of a road test track previously built by former landownerNew United Motor Manufacturing Inc. that runs along the eastern side of the industrial campus.

The news comes as Tesla announced last week it intended to boost production big time in the coming quarters. CEO Elon Musk said the company was producing well more than 400 cars per week and would ramp up to 800 cars per week by 2014. All of Tesla’s vehicles are made in its Fremont factory.

Tesla and Union Pacific didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

City officials Friday greeted the news with enthusiasm.

“They’re one of our key anchor tenants for Fremont and are the poster child for advanced manufacturing,” said Kelly Kline, the city’s economic development director. “This site obviously is of key importance to their operations, being that is houses the test track. We’re pleased they were in the position to buy it.”

The deal represents the balance of Union Pacific’s land holdings to the south of the plant. UP bought the property from New United Motor Manufacturing Inc. (NUMMI) when the car manufacturing plant went bust in March 2010. In July 2012, Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc.purchased about 22 acres of the southern parcel adjacent to Kato Road.

Bob Steinbock, who marketed the site that sold to Telsa for UP, said that interest in the property was high.

Steinbock and colleague Joe Moriarty are still actively marketing 109 acres of bare land to the north of the plant through commercial brokerage CBRE. (You can read more about that offering here.)

Nathan Donato-Weinstein covers commercial real estate and transportation for the Silicon Valley Business Journal.

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About smallmanconstruction

Tim Smallman, the general contractor behind Smallman Construction and Electric, has been in the construction industry for over 20 years. In 2003, Tim decided to leave the corporate world behind and get back to what he loved most about construction: helping his friends, neighbors, and anyone in need achieve their home and business improvement dreams. By founding his company on a principal of customer service, open book bidding, and integrity, Tim has been blessed with a great deal of success. This success has enabled him to expand operations and create an electrical division in 2006. Tim has made San Carlos his family's home for many years. They spend a considerable amount of time supporting their community and striving to make it a great place to live and work. Tim is active in the San Carlos community, coaching youth sports, participating in the Kiwanis Show and the Chickens Ball since 1989, with the proceeds going to the San Carlos Schools and other charitable organizations.

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