Elon Musk Is Planning a 'Utopian' Company Town Called Snailbrook

A plan is reportedly in the works for Elon Musk to build a company town that would house his businesses and employees.

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Elon Musk is reportedly planning his own Utopian town
Photo: Win McNamee (Getty Images)

Tesla, Twitter, SpaceX, and Boring Company CEO Elon Musk is adding one more title to his resume: town owner. The multi-billionaire is reportedly working on building his own “utopia” in Texas and plans to name it Snailbrook.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Musk plans to build the town outside of Austin near his Boring and SpaceX facilities which are currently under construction, according to the outlet. Facebook photos revealed the area already has a collection of modular homes, a pool, an outdoor sports area, and a gym, and already has signs posted that read: “Welcome, snailbrook, tx, est. 2021.”


According to the Journal, Musk’s plans include building a place for his employees to live and charging them roughly $800 per month for one and two-bedroom homes, with the caveat that they would have 30 days to vacate the premises if they were laid off or quit. Although the plans are still in the works, it seems like a good time to ask: Is this even a good idea?

Companies have been lapping up towns for decades, creating a place where they could establish a monopoly of power in an area for their wide-ranging companies and make a profit from their employees. The idea, in essence, sounds good—work for an employer and you get to live in the town with access to all the amenities for a discounted price. But what happens when things go south?


Company towns have a long history of creating so-called utopias for their workers but also created towns that were akin to a prison camps where employers are the landlord and the shopkeep and everything else one could need. Many towns were built by coal companies and the workers often lived in poverty and abuse.

The majority of the company towns were built on the labor and skill set of the workers without adequately paying them or providing normal living standards. According to The Smithsonian, when the coal, steel, and textile industries were booming in the early 19th Century, companies built the towns to require their workers to live in basic housing and sent the kids to company-owned schools where the students were only taught information from the boss’s perspective.


The workers also didn’t receive adequate compensation and were paid in scrip rather than regular money. Scrip was a currency that workers could only use at the company store which often drastically increased its prices by about 20% more than other establishments outside the compound.

While these town models are thought to exist in the past, they are still around today. With Elon Musk showing himself to be a right-wing task master who reportedly fires employees on a whim, loathes safety regulations, fosters discriminatory workplaces, and generally seems to believe laws don’t apply to him, do we really want him running his own town? He already started his own school for his kids, do you think he’s above trying to pay employees with a ScripCoin token?