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We’ve been telling you about Tesla’s big plans for a drive-in movie theater charging complex in Southern California. Now, it is getting final approvals to begin construction of the first-of-its-kind entertainment and charging facility. Here’s what we know about what could be the model for future electric charging stations everywhere.

What will the Tesla Supercharger complex feature?

Tesla supercharger station
Tesla drive-in movie theater supercharger station proposal | Howard via Twitter

When first proposed, the facility was to be in Santa Monica. Then last year, Tesla changed its location to Hollywood, which is an apt environment for CEO Elon Musk’s signature project. Several recent permit updates point toward construction about to commence. So, what will the complex be like?

It is currently a 32 Supercharger charging station, surrounded by two large movie screens and a drive-in-style restaurant. The heart of the facility will have eight Supercharger cabinets, one utility transformer, and two switchboards. 

Why is Tesla doing this Supercharger drive-in?

Tesla supercharger station
Tesla drive-in movie theater supercharger station proposal | Howard via Twitter

Demolition of the existing structure on the property has already been approved, though it has not begun. The overall size is over 24,500 square feet. 

We won’t know the exact visuals of the complex until the City of Los Angeles approves the design. However, last year’s initial plans for the property landed on the internet. With those, several posters have offered their best guesses on what it will look like such as the images included here from Ed Howard’s Twitter account. If things go as planned, construction could begin later this year.

CEO Musk has expressed for years his desire to make Tesla charging stations more than, well, more than just EV charging stations. He envisioned a 1950s-themed presentation with the requisite drive-in restaurant, movie screens for families to enjoy while charging their Teslas, and small stores and entertainment areas for the kids. Tesla merch will, naturally, be sold besides burgers and fries. 

How will Tesla manage the Supercharger facility?

Tesla Supercharger station
Tesla drive-in movie theater supercharger station proposal | Tesla

“Major new Supercharger station coming to Santa Monica soon,” he first revealed on Twitter. “Hoping to have 50’s diner & 100 best movie clips playing too. Thanks, Santa Monica City!” 

An interesting fact about how Tesla has gone about trademarking certain names and signage for the facility is the trademarks themselves. Tesla has gone for trademarks that are generally for franchise arrangements. So should the drive-in charging centers expand, they could be as available franchises, like Mcdonald’s and similar fast-food chains. 

And one more interesting note is that Elon Musk’s brother oversees a restaurant group, so he can come in handy as Tesla ramps up its drive-in themed charging facilities. It’s always great having family in the right places. 


EV Charging Stations Need to Be Faster and More Plentiful