Elon Musk’s project to beat Los Angeles traffic is almost ready to see the light. On Thursday, Musk, the founder of the Boring Company announced that the tunneling passage has nearly finished building its first stretch of a Los Angeles tunnel.
Hence citizens of Los Angeles will soon be able to check out the new tunnel as a demo for free. In his Instagram post, Musk wrote, “Pending final regulatory approvals, we will be offering free rides to the public in a few months.”
Musk, who is also the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX – posted a short video on Instagram of a trip through the Loop’s tunnel.
First Boring Company tunnel under LA almost done! Pending final regulatory approvals, we will be offering free rides to the public in a few months. Super huge thanks to everyone that helped with this project. Strong support from public, elected officials & regulators is critical to success. As mentioned in prior posts, once fully operational (demo system rides will be free), the system will always give priority to pods for pedestrians & cyclists for less than the cost of a bus ticket.
After regulatory approval is received, the public will be offered free rides on the Loop service in the recent months. The idea came up in order to avoid the huge LA traffic and the company’s founder is also devising more plans to extend his project for the public benefit.
After the free “demo system rides” the Boring tunnel will incur a transportation fee. The basic idea is to transport cars, and pods containing pedestrians and cyclists, through the tunnel on electric skates. But the fare for the pedestrians and cyclists would be less than that of a bus ticket as told Musk.
The Boring Company promises to build tunnels faster and cheaper than is in the current norm, partly by improving tunneling machines, and by making narrower tunnels. The projects are planned to develop tunnels for futuristic, vacuum-based Hyperloop systems.
The company has sought the permit for a 2.7-mile tunnel in busy roads of West Los Angeles, which runs parallel to the city’s Sepulveda Boulevard, from Pico Boulevard down to Washington Boulevard but its complete plan involves a 60-mile tunnel network that would be one of the largest subway networks in the United States.
The problem is that the full-blown tunnel beneath the city would require strict scrutiny, taking up to a year. Musk even said that he would build a tunnel between Sherman Oaks and LAX by the end of this year but that is too high an expectation.
Even Musk’s plans have drawn criticism because the transportation experts have warned that such electric skates to be used in the tunnel would worsen traffic congestion as people would be stuck in traffic while navigating cars at tunnel entry points.
The Boring Company also announced that it will not ask for public funding, as the development of new tunnel building techniques will reduce development costs.