Elon Musk's Boring Company Expands With a New Tunnel in Maryland

Saturday, 21 October 2017 - 2:14PM
Technology
Saturday, 21 October 2017 - 2:14PM
Elon Musk's Boring Company Expands With a New Tunnel in Maryland
Boring Company
Elon Musk's Boring Company isn't the most famous of his many companies, with SpaceX and Tesla grabbing most of the headlines; the fact that the "Boring Company" digs tunnels doesn't make it sound fancy. But despite being started on a billionaire's whim after getting stuck in LA traffic, the company is steadily expanding under the radar.

Musk has already been burrowing a test tunnel in Hawthorne, California (not far from Los Angeles), but the state of Maryland has just granted him a permit to dig a 10.3 mile tunnel just outside of Baltimore, according to representatives of Maryland governor Larry Hogan. The entire tunnel will be beneath public land, and its path will stick along the Baltimore-Washington Parkway.

If the tests go well, the tunnel could eventually be expanded into a legitimate underground hyperloop, with a more long-term goal being a super fast ferry which extends from New York to Washington. This dream hyperloop would also make stops in Philadelphia and Baltimore along the way, and the whole trip from NYC to DC would take around 29 minutes total. Again, if the tests go well. 


With all the different hyperloop companies in the game now, even if Musk was among the first to mess with the idea, it could get messy when they all start actually building their trains. Fellow eccentric billionaire Richard Branson also bought a hyperloop company just recently, now called Virgin Hyperloop One, and it's going to be a tricky race to see who can get a working train system up first. 

Branson has a slight advantage because his company is already working on the actual trains for above-ground tracks, while Musk is still building the tunneling machines for his advanced tunnel system. He's poetic about it, at the very least. The first tunneling machine used in Hawthorne (shown in the image above) was called Godot, while Musk is about to unveil a new machine called "Line-Storm" after a Robert Frost poem. 



Presumably it's this second machine that will be digging around in Maryland, although there hasn't been an official announcement connecting those two dots as of yet.

Back in Los Angeles, Musk envisions a ubiquitous maze of Boring Company tunnels beneath the city which can transport everyone's cars (presumably Tesla cars, in his mind) from place to place by lowering them underground and then firing them off along the many tracks beneath the city. It's bold, and it's the type of project that both Lex Luthor and Tony Stark might try to pull off for nefarious/benevolent purposes, so we'll see how close to that dream Musk can get.

But LA traffic is truly awful, and if he can actually solve that, it'll put Boring Company right up with SpaceX and Tesla in terms of usefulness.

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