Elon Musk and the Boring Co. this week unveiled a much-anticipated 1.4-mile test tunnel for transporting vehicles underground in the next step of a larger plan to alleviate traffic conditions in Los Angeles County.
The L.A/Hawthorne test tunnel took special guests and media attendees for rides in a Tesla Model X, with horizontal wheels added to the chassis to keep the car on the track, according to NBC News. Riders cruised through the tunnels at speeds of about 50-60 mph, though Musk has said that the tunnels could eventually be equipped for speeds of up to 150 mph. According to the Los Angeles Times, the trip through the test tunnel was about a two-minute ride in the Model X, which rolled on concrete shelves set in place on each side of the tunnel walls, making for what participants described as a bumpy ride.
Musk's proposed tunnel network, if carried to completion, would take vehicles underground on an elevator to then send them down a track to their destination all around the Los Angeles area.
The test tunnel took about 18 months to complete at a cost of $10 million, Musk told the Times.
The first round of test rides in the Boring Co.'s tunnel prototype comes just a few weeks following the announcement that the company was abandoning plans to implement a test tunnel on the Westside of Los Angeles after neighborhood activist groups brought lawsuits against the project.
Source: Los Angeles Times / NBC News