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Boring Company Introduces Tunnel Garage Prototype

Thursday, September 20, 2018

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Elon Musk’s Boring Company was recently granted approval from the Hawthorne City Council to implement a new addition to its tunnel prototype—a garage that would connect a passenger’s car directly to the underground infrastructure network.

The company  acquired a private residence near the one-mile underground testing tunnel it had already built near the headquarters of Musk's SpaceX private space-travel company. The garage will connect to the tunnel, but the facility will not be open to the public or open out onto the street.

Garage Prototype

In the Boring Company's prototype, cars would enter the tunnel from the nearby SpaceX campus, move through the tunnel to the garage and then back to company property. While the primary function of the tunnel-linked garage is to create a prototype for future designs elsewhere, the company also plans to rent the house out.

The company has also earned approval to create a short offshoot of the tunnel for the removal of a boring machine it had previously intended to leave in the ground. Company spokesperson Jane Labanowski noted that instead of the company choosing to bore a two-mile length of tunnel, it is instead opting to reduce the tunnel length and remove the cutter head from a nearby property that it  recently acquired.

In this most recent round of approvals, the city council also waived requirements under the California Environmental Quality Act. A Boring Company spokesperson noted that more than 100 residents were notified about the work.

“What we want to do is show proof of concept and as quickly as possible,” said company representative Brett Horton. “We are not asking to go around the public process. Yes, we do move fast. We are trying to revolutionize transportation and don’t want to get bogged down.”

The Boring Company

Elon Musk’s Boring Company was recently granted approval from the Hawthorne City Council to implement a new addition to the hyperloop—a garage that would connect a passenger’s car directly to the underground infrastructure network.

Tunnel Construction

The test tunnel was approved late last year, and was projected to go down until it hit 44 feet; a healthy distance beneath underground utilities. Brett Horton, SpaceX’s senior director of facilities and construction, said that the technology being used to build the tunnel is based on already-existing boring methods. The tunnel will serve as a prototype for planned tunnels elsewhere, both with and without the integration of hyperloop super-fast public transit systems. 

One of Musk's plans for the tunnels involves "skates" that would secure an individual car and convey it through a tunnel at higher speeds than a traditionally driven car would go.

In June, the city of Chicago chose to move forward with a plan to have the Boring Company build a tunnel to transport passengers to and from O’Hare International Airport, a project that would be funded privately and, according to reports, would ring in at less than $1 billion.

   

Tagged categories: Infrastructure; Mass transit; NA; North America; Program/Project Management; Tunnel

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