Georgia Supreme Court greenlights Rivian’s $5 billion plant after facing local opposition

The Georgia Supreme Court has handed a victory to Rivian and the Georgia Department of Economic Development (GDED), giving the green light this week to the development of a second Rivian manufacturing facility, overcoming challenges from dissatisfied residents in three rural counties where the plant will reside.

First unveiled in December 2021, the $5 billion project will be built on a 2,000-acre site just outside of Atlanta. Initial plans showed the company planned to build approximately 19.6 million square feet of floor area across 13 different buildings, with the largest building being 4.33 million square feet in size, almost the same size at Giga Texas. Not only will the facility be massive in size, it will also feature much more than just manufacturing with plans for a R&D center, training facility event center, delivery center, on-site test track and adventure trail, and 144 charging stations for outbound vehicles.

At the time Rivian said the new facility will build their “next generation of vehicles” and they hoped to start production in 2024. That timeline was put in jeopardy when the proposal faced opposition from residents of local communities who were concerned about how the plant will affect labour for small businesses in the area and the potential industrial impacts of the plant.

The company also faced a stumbling block when the property tax abatement included in the $1.5 billion state incentive package, the second-largest incentive in the state’s history, was first nullified by the courts, but then later reinstated after an appeal. (via The Atlanta Journal Constitution)

With the setbacks, the plant is now expected to start production of the R2 generation of vehicles in 2026.

Despite facing financial challenges, Rivian has exceeded expectations this year, leading to a significant surge in its stock price. Rivian has reaffirmed their commitment to manufacturing 50,000 EVs in 2023, despite rumours of the potential to produce up to 62,000 vehicles this year.

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