Elon Musk is at it again. Based on a tweet he sent this week, the constantly forward thinking entrepreneur claims to have provisional government approval to build a hyperloop that would connect Manhattan, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington D.C. This super fast railway system will be able to shuttle commuters from New York to Washington in just 29 minutes. Of course, the chance that this is still a pipe dream is not entirely discredited, despite Musk’s assertions. Especially considering that right now, the fastest passenger train in America tops out at 150 mph while the hyperloop requires speeds of 700mph. The underground tube train system would also be the world’s longest tunnel, a feat of modern engineering and architecture that may not be within the realm of possibility at this time.
If anyone can do it, however, Musk can. At the end of 2016, the creator of Tesla introduced “the Boring Company,” his brainchild that, utilizing a similar concept as the hyperloop, has the potential to eradicate the problem of traffic in LA permanently. This is also the company that would oversee the project on the East Coast if Musk is not exaggerating his preliminary approval. There are also a number of others vying to get a piece of the pie, with the most noteworthy being Hyperloop One, a company that just successfully completed breakthrough low-pressure transportation system testing trials in Nevada.
Naysayers and logistics aside, this is not the first time Musk has presented this idea. He actually dreamed up the hyperloop back in 2013, but the concept was somewhat different. Instead of trains, he envisioned passenger pods gliding within vacuum sealed tubes. Regardless of the differences, at least the visionary has consistency, and with technology advancing as quickly as it does today, a futuristic, literal “underground railroad” does not seem as farfetched as it once did.
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