The Boring Company Breaks Ground In Baltimore

4 weeks ago by Steven Loveday 37

Boring

The Boring Company: Godot in segments (via The Boring Company media)

Though some may suggest that a small hole in the ground is boring news, it’s frankly surprising how much progress Elon Musk’s Boring Company is making in terms of beating the odds.

The Boring Company

Entrance to the initial demo. Not much different from what we see at the new site.

Yes, many have said that The Boring Company is a joke. It will never happen and jurisdictions will be unwilling to allow for this digging, along with Musk’s crazy notions. Well … perhaps car elevators built into congested city streets is a bit lofty initially — especially when considering the myriad of obstacles and implications — but who knows at this point. It seems that some locales are more than willing to trust Musk and the Tesla moniker when it comes to disruptive ideas.

For now, Musk’s Boring Company has redirected its efforts toward the Hyperloop. Again, something that Musk proposed, some people disbelieved in, he didn’t have time for and pawned off, and now it’s back and ready for takeoff. And, we know it’s all becoming quite a big deal since Musk is working fundraisers at the moment.

Not long ago, when Elon announced some sort of government approval for a Baltimore-DC underground Hyperloop, people called him out. There were demands about “who” approved “what” and a need for specifics.

Now, in a very short time, the company is starting to dig. Electrek reported about Reddit user, DJB_2015, discovering the site south of Baltimore, Maryland, complete with signage and all. Additionally, on the same day, Maryland Governor, Larry Hogan Tweeted for verification:

Added to all of this, being that The Boring Company currently only has Godot, who’s working in California, another boring machine only makes sense. Elon will need one or two more (or several) on the East coast to even come close to making anything a reality. No worries … welcome Line-Storm:

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37 responses to "The Boring Company Breaks Ground In Baltimore"

  1. Brian says:

    I’d make a joke but it would be boring.

  2. Dan says:

    My Files
    – Important and achievable matters
    – Random $hite
    – Solar roadways
    – Boring company

  3. ffbj says:

    My friend had an idea for a title to a book on chess: “Board to Pieces.”

  4. Greg says:

    To do these tunnels much less expensively and efficiently they won’t have the width that conventional tunnels have to accomodate the ventilation systems necessary for ICE vehicles. Therefore, they will only allow electric vehicles by default as I understand it.

    1. DL says:

      You still need room for emergency egress and smoke ventilation systems. Pretty much the same space as normal ICE ventilation would require.

      1. Ziv says:

        DL, why would a tunnel for BEV’s need smoke ventilation? They are BEVs, not stinky ICE vehicles! Get up to speed!
        Oh, I just read the article about another Tesla burning and the firemen having to work hard to put out the fire.
        Never mind.

        LOL!

        Even tunnels for BEVs will need to be bigger than the first versions of the boring machines that the Boring company is testing. But the Boring company knows that, the first machines are more for learning how to speed the boring process and make it cheaper by the foot bored, not for making the final product.

        1. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          Long traffic tunnels will always need ventilation. People have to breathe, and depending on the geology, the tunnels may need ventilation to prevent buildup of underground gases.

          Without the need to vent gasmobile and diesel exhaust, the need for ventilation is less, but it still exists.

          1. ziv says:

            Have you seen anything that tells what the diameter of the Boring Company tunnels will be? I have eyeballed the machine and it looks like it is around 18′ tall and wide. What would that do, a 16′ tunnel? Figure at 12′ wide roadway with 1′ curb/walkways on either side? 4′ of vertical height below the roadway for pipes/conduit? I haven’t a clue those are just guesses.

            1. ziv says:

              Ah, never mind, I read several more articles on my google search and found that it will be just 12.5′ on the inside of the tunnel. A little snugger fit than is comfortable for a car that is being driven, a better fit for a car riding a sled, I guess.

        2. Ben says:

          electric malfunction, fire, smoke, death

          you need safety tunnels as well as ventilation. if Musk does not build these, he will kill some people, the question would be when and how many.

  5. Breezy says:

    Why is this an article at InsideEVs?

    1. Jay Cole says:

      Because it has to do with the potential future of transportation, one that would also likely be all-electric.

      …but most importantly, cause I felt like it, (=

      1. Will says:

        This article has nothing to do with ev

        1. mhpr262 says:

          Both boring machines nd later the hyperloop capsules are electric …?

          1. Ziv says:

            mhpr, if you want to read a blog with your criteria about what should and should not be written about, publish your own blog.
            Jay and Insideevs want to write about the Boring Company, and I think their choices are a lot more interesting than your probable choices. So I will continue to read Insideevs, as will a ton of other people interested in EVs and related topics.

            1. mhpr262 says:

              “What is reading comprehension?”

              Dude I said this article belongs here because it’s about electric transportation, and electric vehicles. That means I >AGREE<.

        2. Will says:

          Boring company won’t last because massive regelatory rules and Agencies

          1. Mark.ca says:

            You will be surprised how much transportation will change. With millions of cars added each year it will not take long until no one would be able to get around driving.

            1. Will says:

              Yeah transportation will change but it will be in more mass transit, congestion center tolls, hyperloops and high speed rail. Airlines are now providing direct flights to major cities from smaller airports with twin engine jets that are efficient. Roads and the interstate infruaststruce is so underfunded that not even us government can save it. The boring company wont be the answer because we don’t even know what it will be use for, hyperloop which need twin tunnels and faster tunneling process with going over governmental huddles or the sled which havent been tested on 1.1 scale and same as above

    2. Dav8or says:

      Because it involves Elon Musk. There is some serious idolizing hero worship that goes on here.

  6. Ocean Railroader says:

    Maryland is currently looking into spending 9 billion dollars on a massive tolled highway project on Interstates 270 and Interstates 495 and Interstate 95 along withe DC Baltimore Parkway widening 295.

    http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-hogan-projects-20170921-story.html

    Now if I were a government offical in a sprawl locked area such as Maryland in need of some super widened highways I wouldn’t mind asking Elon Musk to dig out some traffic caverns below ground to release the flowing rivers of metal from the surface freeways even if Elon Musk wanted a small toll on his tunnel project.

    1. Will says:

      They should spend that straightening the NEC between Baltimore and DC

    2. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

      The problem is that if it were actually built, the Boring Co. concept would be so expensive on a per-car basis that only the very rich could afford to use it.

      Very expensive yet very low-capacity traffic tunnels running everywhere, even in the very unlikely case they are ever built, would do very little to relieve traffic congestion for the average person. Solutions to that involve mass transit systems, which the Boring Co. concept most definitely is not.

      1. Will says:

        I see the Boeing Company like the old toll roads, and stage coach of the 1800s only the rich can use it while the masses will still use the underfunded roads and obsolete Northest Corridor rail line. The 9Bill should go towards those projects not to a tunnel that won’t benefit the masses

      2. Jim Whitehead says:

        It would indeed be a high priced boondoggle if the dead hand of the government or unionized Amtrak ran it into the ground (pun intended).

        Musk could create a hyperloop “car train” of 50 or 600 cars, that pulls multiple floating EV platforms linked together. Please note that a good design will have very little friction for the interior cars, just like in high speed trains, so pulling 100 Hyperloop cars might only take the energy (air drag) of pulling about 10 individual Hyperloop cars. There could be an outer shell that encloses each of the cars to provide air streaming and off they go. (Amtrak still runs a “car train” from Lorton, Virginia that takes annual “Snowbirds” and their cars to Florida every winter and brings them back. I considered using it, but feeble unionized Amtrak never made it cheaper than driving. It rmains a joke for rich Mr. Magoo types who can’t manage to drive very far on the highway. Its noisy and run by its Amtrak. So don’t judge Musk’s prospects by doddering Amtrak standards. That’s like judging Tesla by GM prospects).

        1. will says:

          Won’t work, government rules won’t allow it

          1. will says:

            NEC is most profitable rail line in America

        2. Ocean Railroader says:

          I really think that if Elon Musk had a better and faster way of tunneling like he claims he could use it to build a system of low cost subway tunnels that would extend the Baltimore and Washington DC subways and streetcar line systems in a regional mega system.

          I really think that the idea of having cars on skateboards would be very expensive to run. In that if one skateboard breaks down you could in theory be stuck in the tunnel for hours and hours in that they will have to fish the broke down car out.

          Also if the tunnel was for subways or streetcars and they could dig what was once a billion dollar section of tunnel for say 250 million that would spur some construction projects.

        3. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

          @ Jim Whitehead:

          The Hyperloop system might well one day be practical. I heartily approve of those startups which are trying to develop Hyperloop.

          The Boring Co. concept isn’t Hyperloop, and let’s not confuse the two. One way Elon’s proposal for Hyperloop is much more practical is by use of a mild steel tube elevated on pylons. The Hyperloop deliberately avoided use of tunnels because those are much more expensive to construct than an elevated railway-type tube system.

          Hyperloop also does not have the absurd proposal that the Boring Co. concept has for elevators carrying individual cars up and down from street level; elevators which would occupy valuable real estate on already crowded city streets, and make the parking problem in such places even worse than it is.

          Elon has confused the two concepts by talking about using Boring Co. type traffic tunnels to carry Hyperloop capsules on the East Coast, but he hasn’t given up his mad pursuit of the Boring Co. concept. Just the other day there was a news report that the Boring Co. built a technology demonstrator for the single-car elevator system… as if anybody really needed to be shown that yes, elevators can carry cars! Duh…

        4. Ben says:

          Airstreaming does not work in tunnels, which are hardly any bigger than the train itself.
          In the end it does not matter, how aerodynamic your train is, as the train is so long you end up pushing all the air in the tunnel to the next station. That is why subway trains geometry typically does not care for aerodynamics very much.

  7. QCO says:

    Post this article on the “insidetunnels.com” sister web site…

    1. zzzzzzzzzz says:

      Musk cult is integral part of “EV revolution”, so everything relevant to him is highly relevant to EVs too :/

  8. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    So, the plan is to tunnel for a few blocks. Kinda like building a bridge to nowhere.

    The Boring Company still looks like a joke to me. Only now it’s an expensive joke.

    1. Will says:

      Thanks push agree as well

  9. Midelectric says:

    Hogan cancelled the RedLine transit project in Baltimore that would have finally provided east-west mobility to the city, calling it a “boondoggle”. Yet he’s rolling out the red carpet for this patently decadent vanity project. Ridiculous

    1. Will says:

      +
      The metro was built in places that thier no jobs and no where people live at. That’s what happens when you built mass transit on the cheap

      1. Midelectric says:

        Please don’t confuse how suburbanites use public transit to how the largely black city population does. The metro is crowded with people getting around within city limits, and if the cars are empty by the time they get to Owings Mills it’s because suburbanites would rather sit in I-83 gridlock. The perception that the RedLine wouldn’t benefit “anyone” says volumes about whose lives and fortunes are valued in Baltimore

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