LA committee votes to fast-track Elon Musk’s transit tunnel

Musk wants to build a transit system that would move users at speeds up to 150 miles per hour

Concept art for Musk's super-fast tunnel (Credit: The Boring Company)
Concept art for Musk's super-fast tunnel (Credit: The Boring Company)

A Los Angeles City Council committee and Elon Musk are moving at the same speed.

The city council’s Public Works and Gang Reduction Committee voted to fast track a proof of concept for a super-speed underground transit system that Musk’s Boring Company wants to build beneath Sepulveda Boulevard in the Westside.

The committee recommended the city exempt the project from a lengthy review under the California Environmental Quality Act, which could take years, according to Curbed. The motion now goes to the full Los Angeles City Council for approval.

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Musk isn’t in the clear yet though: The Los Angeles Metropolitan Transit Authority (Metro) sent him a letter this week pulling rank. The transit agency’s leadership said the agency needed to certify that the project wouldn’t interfere with its own tunnel boring plans beneath Sepulveda Boulevard for the Sepulveda Transit Corridor project. That project would run from Van Nuys Boulevard to Los Angeles International Airport.

The mayor of Culver City also wants a say because the tunnel’s southern portion terminates in the city. The city’s public works committee backs amendments to the exemption to require the Boring Company and Metro work together to ensure their projects are compatible, according to Curbed.

Musk’s 2.7-mile tunnel would run from West Pico Boulevard to just south of Washington Boulevard in Culver City, but Musk eventually wants to bore a network of tunnels citywide. It would transport small bus-like vehicles and individual cars around the city at speeds up to 150 miles per hour with the goal of reducing congestion above ground, according to Musk. One of the goals of his Boring Company is to reduce construction costs by a factor of 10. [Curbed] – Dennis Lynch