Elon Musk brings technology charm offensive to Los Angeles tunnel plan

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There were concerns that the project of a high-speed transportation tunnel might interfere with the area's rail projects. "You won't even know we even exist", said Steve Davis, with the Boring Company.

At a press conference held, nearly by fate, at the Leo Baeck Temple near the Interstate 405 freeway, the illustrious revealed details of his tunnel vision that proves just how un-boring his youngest company is.

Musk pledged his tunneling venture, to be built well below the city's utilities and existing metro lines using electronic boring equipment, would be virtually noiseless.

Known for aggressively taking on large-scale technical challenges with which he has had little previous experience, Musk ended his pitch on a humble note, telling the audience that realizing his vision "could only happen with public support".

Whether staunch critics were swayed remained to be seen.

He shared a timelapse video last week zooming through the Hawthorne tunnel, saying the company plans to offer free demonstration rides to the public "in a few months".

What this could very well mean is that The Boring Company and SpaceX might just be teaming up to build a myriad of hyperloop systems in Los Angeles so that commuters would not only be able to avoid traffic, but might also one day be able to hop on one of Musk's BFR rockets and catch a flight to Shanghai, arriving in less than 60 minutes. He teased that they would be delivered personally via a Boring Company van.

Musk, the SpaceX and Tesla founder who began a tunnel-digging venture called The Boring Co. previous year in Hawthorne, said on Twitter that he will present plans and take questions during the 7 p.m. meeting at Leo Baeck Temple. He added he has every intent of submitting to a full environmental study for the tunnel network as a whole when the time comes.

The proposed Sepulveda test tunnel is on the fast track. Davis said Musk has challenged his team to match the digging pace of a snail (0.03 MPH), and get up to 1/10th of the average walking speed of a human at about 0.3 miles per hour - compared to its current top speed of about 0.003 miles per hour.

Musk launched his foray into public transit after complaining about traffic on Twitter in late 2016, vowing to "build a boring machine and just start digging".

The MTA said in a statement on Thursday night that it would coordinate with The Boring Company on a test tunnel near Sepulveda Boulevard, one of the busiest roads in Los Angeles.



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