Published: Thu, June 14, 2018
Money | By Ralph Mccoy

Elon Musk's Boring Company to build Chicago high-speed airport link

Elon Musk's Boring Company to build Chicago high-speed airport link

Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce The Boring Company's latest product launch, life-size Lego-like interlocking bricks that can be used to create sculptures and buildings.

If you're planning to fly into Chicago's O'Hare International Airport at some point in the future, you might be pleasantly surprised by the transit options.

Elon Musk's Boring Co.is the victor in a bid to build a multibillion-dollar high-speed express train to O'Hare International Airport, according to people with knowledge of the matter. Instead of standard 28 feet one-lane tunnels, Boring says by reducing the diameter to 14 feet it can reduce tunneling costs by three to four times.

Announcing the agreement Wednesday night, Adam Collins, a spokesman for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, said the journey will take approximately 12 minutes. It is unknown when the project will go online, but the concept has made some headway in major U.S. cities.

Previous city officials have tried to implement an express line between Chicago's largest airport and the downtown area but to no avail. The Boring Company is promising that the system will transport passengers in 12 minutes with automated electric cars that carry 16 passengers (and their luggage) to a vehicle.

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The Boring Company's new O'Hare Airport Station.

Electric pods called skates will run on rails under the city, each capable of carrying between 8 and 16 passengers at up to 150 miles per hour (240 km/h). This most recent effort was originally proposed last November, when the city opened up a "Request for Qualifications"-the first formal step in vetting companies eligible to submit proposals". No taxpayer dollars will be funding the service, the mayor said. According to the Chicago Sun Times, The Boring Company says it can install the whole thing, including the new airport station and Block 37 renovation, for under $1 billion.

An overall project costs and construction timeline will be finalized during this process.

Currently, Chiagoans can ride to the airport for $5 on a Chicago Transit Authority train, taking about 40 minutes.

Boring said the fare will be less than half that of a taxi or ride share but more than the fare on the current train system. The company has been digging under a SpaceX parking lot, while its application to dig a tunnel beneath Los Angeles and Culver City is caught up regulatory obstacles and legal challenges. After Thursday's announcement, the city will begin one-on-one contract negotiations with The Boring Company.

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