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The village that wants to buy SpaceX to get to Mars



Before Elon Musk's US space company SpaceX realizes its ambitious plan to colonize Mars, it faces a very terrestrial problem. In fact, the company is trying to buy and then evacuate a small town in south Texas. There, the first tests were started for the construction of Starship, the large and powerful spaceship, with which it will one day reach the Martian soil. The tests of the engines and other equipment are more turbulent than expected and endanger the safety of the area. SpaceX wants to remain uninhabited, even if not all residents agree.

Boca Chica is located in Cameron County, the southernmost state of Texas: If you look at a map, this is the tip that borders Mexico. The village (technically a "hamlet", meaning a village) has nearly 30 inhabitants, spread over a handful of houses a few miles from the beach and the waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

Launched in 201

4 The presence of SpaceX, which has been given permission by the local government to establish a launch pad for its tests and, in the future, a real spaceport, is becoming increasingly consistent. The launch site is located a few kilometers from Boca Chica in the direction of the beach. Hangars and offices were built near the built-up area.

The area is strategically priced for SpaceX plans in which the design is tested and the first spacecraft in the region is launched. In late August, she successfully completed a test of the Starhopper prototype, which reached a height of about 150 meters.

The tests involving unfinished rockets are not without danger and have recently been carried out leading to a bushy fire near Boca Chica. In the future, it could become even worse if the tested rockets become stronger and the presence of the small inhabited area presents a difficulty in obtaining the required permits from the aviation safety authorities. Hence the decision to buy the entire Boca Chica.

Last week, SpaceX sent residents a proposal to buy their home. The letter states that the practices are managed by JLL, an independent real estate company that cares about the valuation of the homes. Each owner is offered three times the estimated value of the reviews, and the cost of the bureaucratic part is fully borne by SpaceX. Complete the deal immediately without asking for more money. The offering also includes a bonus that would appeal to many space exploration enthusiasts, but hardly to the elite residents of Boca Chica:

SpaceX recognizes that proximity to its activities has provided a unique opportunity to live close up developing the most advanced Rocket that was ever built. In recognition of your support, we offer all residents accepting the offer the opportunity to maintain this link with the development of Starship and invite them to participate in future private launches that are inaccessible to the public.

Business Insiders interviewed the residents of Boca Chica, noting that the owners of a dozen properties are unwilling to accept the offer for reasons of economic unity. Many believe that the triple price of the house is not a fair deal, as several have been living in the area for ten years and have no plans to move. The area is also close to a beach and according to the owners this should be taken into account when evaluating the value of the houses.

The offer, it is always said, the letter from SpaceX, is valid for a few weeks, so the inhabitants You have to decide by 26 September, what to do. The proposal does not provide much information on what might happen in the event of a disagreement: in cases such as these, where there are permits and concessions in between, legal disputes are initiated which may lead to expropriations.


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