SpaceX to move Starship and Super Heavy production to Texas Coast as hop tests near
Boca China Beach, Cameron County, Texas - SpaceX announced today that plans to ultimately build BFR (now known as Starship/Super Heavy) in the Port of Los Angeles have at least initially been replaced with a decision to move that development to South Texas, although details about the new facilities and their timelines remain have yet to be shared.
Drawn to one possible conclusion, this could mean that SpaceX no longer intends to build a BFR factory in the Port of Los Angeles, while all Falcon 9/Heavy, Merlin, and Raptor manufacturing will remain in the company’s Hawthorne, CA headquarters for the foreseeable future. However, the statements do not preclude the possibility that SpaceX still plans to develop an oceanside factory in the near future for Super Heavy, Starship, or both.
“To streamline operations, SpaceX is developing and will test the Starship test vehicle at our site in South Texas. This decision does not impact our current manufacture, design, and launch operations in Hawthorne and Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Additionally, SpaceX will continue recovery operations of our reusable Falcon rockets and Dragon spacecraft at the Port of Los Angeles.” – SpaceX, January 16th, 2019
In early 2018, SpaceX announced that it had required a new berth in Port of San Pedro with the specific intention of building a brand-new BFR factory. By keeping BFR production in Los Angeles and locating it directly adjacent to its transportation mode of choice (a barge from California to Texas), the official hope was to retain the best aerospace talent in the US (generally centered around central California) and ensure that its main Hawthorne factory was just a short drive away while still being able to relatively affordably transport massive 9m/30 foot-diameter BFR spaceships and boosters between California and Texas.
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