This what it's like to be Elon Musk's neighbour

Moya Lothian-McLean@moya_lm
Friday 22 May 2020 10:30
news

Elon Musk recently announced he’s selling most of his possessions, including the bulk of his property portfolio.

Lucky for residents in California, where two of his homes have now been listed for sale.

According to a new investigation by Esquire reporter Rachel Monroe, Musk is the neighbour from hell.

Or rather, his SpaceX project is.

In a piece titled “Elon Musk, His Rocket, and the Grand Scheme that Tore Apart Boca Chica”, Monroe lays out a series of events involving Elon Musk’s space exploration scheme and residents forced to leave a remote beach community in Texas.

Helpfully, she also summarised her findings in a Twitter thread – and it doesn’t paint Musk in a flattering light.

Monroe alleges that a few years ago, SpaceX began moving operations to Boca Chica, a “quiet [retirement] community by a wildlife preserve”. It didn’t stay that way.

Soon there was 24-hour construction, bright lights on site at night and large trucks making noise at “all hours”.

Since 3 May, there have also been “rocket tests” happening in the wee hours of the morning.

Residents are warned in advance, says Monroe, by the police arriving around 10pm and informing them there will be tests at dawn.

But it’s not as simple as suffering through a loud bang; Musk’s rockets currently have a tendency to explode.

Which leaves people living within a mile of the site chosen for a test the difficult choice of staying put and hoping the test succeeds or fleeing to another location in the middle of a pandemic.

Despite SpaceX’s promises that there would be minimal disruption and a “handful” of tests, including pledges to rarely force closures of the local beaches, Monroe says the public beach has been made to close “constantly” this month due to SpaceX testing.

She accused Musk of “taking over public resources” and the company of essentially lying to residents.

The retirees living in Boca Chica have apparently been told they have to move because SpaceX says it’s not safe for them to remain there.

But according to a report in Intelligent Living, it’s actually because Musk is planning to build a “SpaceX Village” resort, including “100 electronically bookable rooms and regularly planned activities, such as volleyball tournaments, rock climbing, kayaking, and “spaceport lounge events and parties”.

Monroe’s thread wraps up with a quote from Musk in 2005, when SpaceX were briefly forced off their site by Lockheed Martin.

Somebody else builds a house next to you and tells you to get out of your house, like, what the hell? . . . 

We’re going to fight that issue, because it is just fundamentally unfair.

Between the rockets, the Red Pill tweets and his conspiracy theory about coronavirus, could Elon Musk prove to be the worst neighbour of all time?

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