| 11:08 AM EST

Ford Opens Detroit HQ for EV, Self-Driving Car Operations

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Ford Motor Co. has refurbished a former factory in Detroit’s historic Corktown district and is making the 45,000 sq-ft building the global headquarters for its electrification and self-driving vehicle businesses.

 The building will house the carmaker’s electric and plug-in hybrid development group, called Ford Team Edison. The staff is developing 40 electrified models, including 16 all-electric vehicles, that Ford plans to roll out globally by 2022.

The Corktown building also is the new headquarters for Ford’s autonomous vehicle business team. The co-located teams will develop a custom-designed, fully self-driving vehicle with hybrid powertrain that Ford aims to put into production in 2021.

Ford announced the Corktown project in December. Media reports in March indicated the carmaker also has discussed acquiring the 18-story, 504,500 sq-ft Michigan Central train depot a few blocks away. The reports said Ford was interested in turning the abandoned station into part of a campus as the company expands its mobility services, data analytics and autonomous vehicle operations.

Corktown, which was settled as an Irish enclave 170 years ago, is located less than one mile west of downtown Detroit and is the city’s oldest neighborhood. Ford founder Henry Ford’s father was born in County Cork, Ireland.