Chicago Picks Musk's Boring Co. for O'Hare Express Service

The Boring Company's new O'Hare Airport Station

Chicago has picked Elon Musk's Boring Company to build a futuristic transportation link to the city's airport.

"We're really excited to work with the mayor and the city to bring this new high-speed public transportation system to Chicago", a Boring Company spokesman said as the company announced the news on Thursday. At a news conference with Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Thursday, Musk said the Loop "will ultimately transition to the Hyperloop system".

Last year, mayor Emanuel begged innovators and technologists to submit proposals to help update the city's public transportation system.

Autonomous electric vehicles known as skates would carry 8 to 16 people and their luggage on the 18-mile trip between O'Hare and Block 37 in about 12 minutes, reaching a top speed of about 150 miles per hour.

The transport system Boring has proposed is called Loop, a slower version of the Hyperloop that's designed for shorter distances and doesn't require vacuum conditions. The pods will be made by Musk's other company, Tesla Inc. City officials said it would be able to handle 2,000 passengers per hour in each direction, with departures as frequently as every 30 seconds.

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In May, Musk said a tunnel built under a Los Angeles suburbto test a transportation system was nearly complete and that the public would be offered free rides in a few months. Better, but it still takes 40 minutes to make the trip.

The Tribune reports that The Boring Company will shoulder all the costs of the project, which it estimates to be around $1 billion.

The Chicago and Los Angeles projects come as Musk wrestles with production problems for the rollout of the highly anticipated Tesla Model 3 sedan. The company is now seeking approval to expand to a larger tunnel in West Los Angeles. A lengthy write-up in The Chicago Tribune says that the total cost of the project could be around $1 billion, according to unnamed sources with knowledge on the matter. Musk founded the company in the hope of alleviating city gridlock by building more tunnels, an endeavor that has set the company's engineers toward improving tunneling techniques.

"We're taking a bet on a guy who doesn't like to fail - and his resources. He's proven something", Emanuel said, according to the newspaper. The Boring Company released Wednesday renderings of what the underground system and rail cars would look like. A trip would cost $20 to $25.

The company said it will fund the project in its entirety, and that it plans to collect ticket and advertising revenue. They are created to carry between eight and 16 passengers, or a single passenger vehicle, according to the company.

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