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Fri September 24 2021

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Elon Musk plans to put ‘electric skates’ under Los Angeles

17 Aug 18 Elon Musk’s tunnelling business is proposing the construction of a high-speed underground public transport system running to the Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, California.

The Boring Company is proposing construction of the Dugout Loop, which would link the stadium to a western terminus in the Los Feliz, East Hollywood, or Rampart Village neighbourhoods. Passengers would be transported on autonomous ‘electric skates’ travelling at 125-150 miles per hour.

The aim is to help reduce traffic by existing public transport. The line would have an estimated journey time of less than 4 minutes.Each would carry between eight and 16 passengers. Passengers would load into the electric skates, which access the Dugout Loop tunnel from the surface via a ramp or elevator. The electric skates are based around the Tesla Model X platform and are propelled by multiple electric motors. The company says that the fare would be about US$1 and that the project would be 100% privately funded.

The company had previously planned to build a test tunnel as a proof of concept for tunnelling in Los Angeles. “The Boring Company has made technical progress much faster than expected and has decided to make its first tunnel in Los Angeles an operational one, hence Dugout Loop,” it said.

Dugout Loop would consist of a single, underground tunnel running from Dodger Stadium to the western terminus. A Loop Lift (see description below) will also be constructed at each terminus. Additionally, up to six ventilation/exit shafts would be constructed on private property adjacent to the alignment. Following construction of the tunnel, the Boring Company would install the concrete “shelves” which serve as the guideway for ‘electric skates’ to carry people.

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The company said that construction of the tunnel and the two loop lifts would take up to 14 months – though it adds that it is likely to take much less. Construction of the ventilation shafts is expected to take approximately 6 weeks and will be constructed concurrently with development of the tunnel.

The top and bottom of the tunnel would generally be approximately 30 and 44 feet below the ground, respectively.

The Boring Company said that, initially, Dugout Loop will be limited to approximately 1,400 people - approximately 2.5% of stadium capacity per event. It could be possible to increase ridership per game to 2,800 per game or event. It estimates that, the system Loop would transport 250,000 people per year.

The initial study and notice of preparation for the Dugout Loop process were made available for public review yesterday in a process that runs to 17 September. A public scoping meeting will be held at Dodger Stadium towards the end of this month.

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