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Tesla to sell cars in Burlingame
April 24, 2013, 05:00 AM Daily Journal Staff Report
Electric car enthusiasts can soon stop in Burlingame to get a look at Tesla’s offerings after plans to open a showroom were approved by the Planning Commission Monday.

Work is already underway at 50 Edwards Court as a Tesla service center. On Monday, the commission approved a conditional use permit application to allow the electronic car company to also sell cars at the location.

Sales tax was a topic that caused a brief pause in moving the process along.

Tesla’s model has been to pay the tax to wherever the car is delivered, Tesla representative Matthew Mefford wrote in a January letter to the city. For example, if a San Mateo resident orders a car and, once completed, the car is delivered to his or her home, then that city would get the sales tax. Burlingame had previously stated a desire to get that sales tax revenue. It appears Tesla’s model they have followed will be in place for this location but, ultimately, the approval came with a condition that Tesla must follow all state regulations concerning sales tax.

The selected Burlingame location is highly visible from Highway 101 in the Rollins Road light industrial area north of Broadway. Previously used as a distribution facility, the new Tesla location is proposed to have a 2,283-square-foot showroom in the front of the building. Up to five vehicles could be displayed indoors. Since vehicles are built to order, no other vehicles will be stored on site, according to the application. Finalized orders are submitted and the vehicle is then produced at the Fremont facility. The car can then be delivered directly to the customer or to the Burlingame facility using a truck and a 20-foot trailer.

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