Whether it was called SolarCity, Tesla or Panasonic, the biggest question of when the huge expensive building that the “Buffalo Billion” brought to South Buffalo would finally be opened has been answered: this weekend from 8:00 am -5:00pm. The 1.2 million square foor facility will become the new home of Super Flea & Farmers Market, which had it’s former home on Waldern Avenue in Cheektowaga turned into a Walmart.
In 2013, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a deal to build a solar factory panel factory for the company Silevo in 2013. In 2014, Silevo was acquired by SolarCity, which promised to expand the scope of the theoretical plant (and also bring a monorail to the city). When SolarCity’s market plummeted, real-life Tony Stark character Elon Musk stepped in and had his company Tesla purchase SolarCity. The company then stated they would also begin production of a new type of solar roofing tiles, and would bring in Panasonic to help produce.
SolarCity initially promised that the entire population of Buffalo would have jobs with them, with even the janitorial staff making enough money to live and own homes in areas of the city slated for gentrification, and everyone could retire comfortably at age 55.
Now, Elon Musk has announced a strategic re-positioning of the entire venture. In a conference call to investors and partners Friday afternoon, Musk stated that approximately 95% of the factory site would house the return of “Super Flea”, which would rent table space to various vendors. Said Musk:
The Buffalo area has always been a great market for knock off Pokémon backpacks, used vintage video game cartridges, questionable health and hygiene products and gently used baby strollers and mid-grade sports cards and collectibles. Now with Super Flea coming back, we are already partnering with vendors who will be selling a few things the original Super Flea missed out on, such as hoverboards, vape supplies and those new-fangled fidget spinners the kids are playing with today.
We expect hundreds of vendors will take up shop here, with sales of up to $10,000 a month here. We will hope to add up to 50 jobs as part of the facilities support staff, mostly part-time, as this will be a “weekends only” site.
Musk also had a phone call with Governor Cuomo, telling him the dream of low cost, high efficiency solar panels is not dead, as they will have “a couple of guys working in the back on hand making them”, most likely near the proposed food cafeteria (selling hot dogs and hamburgers, with a goal of adding pizza by 2023)
The farmers market portion of the exciting new venture will be outside in the massive parking lot, which will also have a section of that guy selling you back your hubcap that popped off on the road that he’ll sell back to you.
Doors open this Saturday at 8:00 am!