Erkner (dpa) - The new Gigafactory of the US electric car manufacturer Tesla in Grünheide near Berlin will get by with significantly fewer concrete piles in the groundwater than previously planned.

"Originally we believed that we would need up to 15,000 stakes, in the end it was still 1,100," said a Tesla spokesman on the occasion of the inauguration of the "Tesla Street", which leads to the Tesla site. Now the concept has been changed so that 500 to 550 piles are enough. "Only the press shop, but no longer the foundry, is built on piles."

The US company is not only responding to the concerns of environmentalists who fear negative consequences for nature and groundwater. The saved concrete columns with a length of up to 14 meters also relieve the construction budget in the millions.

Tesla plans to roll off up to 500,000 vehicles a year in Grünheide in Brandenburg from July next year. The final environmental approval from the state of Brandenburg is still pending. Tesla is already building at its own risk, with early approvals. The Brandenburg State Environment Agency recently gave the green light for the foundation and the shell construction with an early start.

A Tesla spokesman was confident that the Gigafactory Berlin, the official name of the Tesla plant in Brandenburg, could break the previous construction record for the Gigafactory Shanghai around a year ago. The high speed of construction in Grünheide can be explained, among other things, by the intensive use of prefabricated components. But the railway connection also contributes to this. Up to 1200 tons of building material could be delivered in one train. In Shanghai everything had to be transported by truck.

It has not yet been decided whether the batteries will also be produced in Grünheide. The previous planning documents do not provide for a battery factory.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 200814-99-172329 / 2

Tesla on the planned factory near Berlin