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Elon Musk’s Boring Company to bid on Chicago’s proposed train with ‘high-speed loop’

After the Los Angeles tunnel network and the Baltimore-DC underground Hyperloop, Elon Musk’s Boring Company is going to attempt a third infrastructure project: a ‘high-speed loop’ to link Chicago’s airport to downtown.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel revealed this summer that he was already in talks with Musk’s new startup about using their technology in the city.

But Musk has now confirmed that they will “compete to fund, build & operate a high-speed Loop connecting Chicago O’Hare Airport to downtown.”

Emanuel had promised to address the issue of the long transit time between the O’Hare airport on the center of the city, which can often take 40 minutes to an hour, and his solution is a high-speed train system.

The city’s infrastructure trust has issued a request for qualifications for companies to submit proposals for a system that would cover the route in 20 minutes or less.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports:

“The city and the trust will consider “potential corridors above or below surface level” to deliver express service “at least every 15 minutes for the majority of the day” for fares “less than” the cost of a taxicab or Uber ride to O’Hare.”

Following the announcement of the request for qualifications, Musk announced that the Boring Company will submit a proposal:

Since the Boring Company has been working on both a new hyperloop system and a high-speed electric skate system, I wasn’t sure what he meant by ‘high-speed loop’.

I asked if he could clarify and Musk responded:

So it sounds like it would be something other than a hyperloop or the Boring Company’s electric skate concept.

Musk even added that it could not need rails:

Companies have until January 24 to respond to the request for qualifications. At that point, the city will choose one or more concepts and move to the next step.

Electrek’s Take

To me, it sounds like it could be something similar to the minibus seen in the concept video for The Boring Company. It would fit the description of an “electric pod”.

Now it’s still unclear how they would travel in what we assume will be a tunnel since that’s the expertise that the company is trying to build.

We could be talking about a magnetic levitation system? Or maybe something completely different? What do you think? Let us know in the comment section below.

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