Google announced today it is building a self-driving technology development center in the Greater Detroit area.
The center will be in Novi, Michigan and represents a company shift from the tech world of Silicon Valley to the car world of Michigan.
“Many of our current partners are based here,” Google’s Self-Driving Car Project explains in a Google Plus post, “so having a local facility will help us collaborate more easily and access Michigan’s top talent in vehicle development and engineering.”
The future location will be 53,000 square feet, and when it opens, it will start with a focus on making the autonomous Chrysler Pacifica minivans that were announced on May 3.
Other than Tesla, car manufacturing in the United States is centered in Michigan. But Michigan has become more techie in recent years, as more and more companies have gone there to work on autonomous vehicles. The University of Michigan even has an autonomous car track to simulate miles and test new technology.