San Jose Mercury News: Green company Wrightspeed moving from San Jose to Alameda, January 20, 2015


ALAMEDA -- Wrightspeed, the company created by Tesla Motors co-founder Ian Wright that produces technology to make commercial trucks greener and more energy efficient, is leaving San Jose and moving into what was once an aircraft hangar at the former Alameda Naval Air Station.

Wrightspeed will invest $3 million to establish an assembly facility inside the 110,000-square-foot hangar near the San Francisco Bay shoreline, the company announced Tuesday.

The company currently has about 25 employees and anticipates hiring about 250 more over the next three years, when it should be fully up and running in Alameda. Wrightspeed is expected to take possession of the former hangar in February.

An approximately $6 million grant from the California Energy Commission is helping spur the move to Alameda, where Wrightspeed secured a seven-year lease with an option to purchase the cavernous, city-owned building.

The move from San Jose means Wrightspeed will join Natal Energy, Google's Makani Power, Imprint Energy and Sila Nanotechnolgies at the former naval base, now known as Alameda Point. What helps make the powertrain units from Wrightspeed innovative is that the technology can be installed in existing delivery and garbage trucks, lowering emissions and noise while allowing the aging vehicles to remain on the road when they might otherwise be scrapped. Electrifying the trucks also offers savings in fuel cost because they become battery-powered.