Chicago taps Elon Musk’s Boring Company to Build High-Speed Transit Tunnels

Bill Ruthhart and John Byrne:

All told, Boring has estimated the project will cost less than $1 billion, according to a source familiar with the company’s proposal but not authorized to speak publicly because of ongoing negotiations.
In exchange for paying to build the new transit system, Boring would keep the revenue from the system’s transit fees and any money generated by advertisements, branding and in-vehicle sales, Rivkin and the company said. Ownership of the twin tunnels has not been determined, but the Emanuel administration plans to seek a long-term lease to Musk’s company, a source familiar with the proposal said.

Interesting model... But one thing is this not:

The entrepreneur’s main solution is a concept called “Hyperloop,” an “ultra high-speed” underground transit system in which passengers ride through a vacuum tunnel system in self-driving electric pods with pressurized cabins at speeds of more than 600 mph.
The concept Musk and Boring envision for Chicago, however, is more basic and simply dubbed “Loop.”

Hyperloop has always seemed to be more a pie-in-the-sky science/thought experiment. That's not to say the technology couldn't work, it's just that it would cost billions upon billions of dollars to build when you just consider the required land rights alone. 

At a recent question-and-answer session in Los Angeles, Musk also said the company’s boring machines would have three times the power and would run on Tesla batteries without the expense of miles of high voltage cables that other machines use. Musk also said Boring would build the tunnels’ concrete shells as it continues to dig and was working with “first-rate” engineers to find ways to remove dirt faster.

This idea, while still fantastically wild, sounds almost infinitely more feasible than Hyperloop ever did. 


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