SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Alphabet Inc’s Waymo said on Tuesday it had chosen a factory in Detroit to mass produce self-driving cars, looking to the historical heart of the auto industry to build the vehicles of the future.

FILE PHOTO: Waymo CEO John Krafcik speaks on stage during the annual Google I/O developers conference in Mountain View, California, May 8, 2018. REUTERS/Stephen Lam

The company’s chief executive, John Krafcik, said in a blog post that Waymo would partner with American Axle & Manufacturing to lease and repurpose an existing Detroit facility that will be operational by mid-2019.

Waymo said in January it had chosen Michigan for its first production facility, adding it would receive incentives from the public-private partnership agency, the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, and