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Elon Musk may be planning to start a new company that helps ease the country’s vehicle congestion problems. In a series of tweets on Saturday, the Tesla boss announced his frustration at being stuck in traffic and his intention to tackle the issue by building a tunnel boring machine.
“Traffic is driving me nuts. Am going to build a tunnel boring machine and just start digging...,” wrote Musk. “It shall be called “The Boring Company,”” he added.
I am actually going to do this— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) December 17, 2016
Musk has spoken about the advantages of tunnels in the past. As noted by GeekWire, he called them a “simple and obvious” way to fix excess traffic back in January.
Tunnels are great. It’s just a hole in the ground. It’s not that hard. But if you have tunnels in cities you would massively alleviate congestion, and you could have tunnels at all different levels. You could probably have 30 layers of tunnels and completely fix the congestion problem in high-density cities. So I strongly recommend tunnels.
Despite quipping that his “Boring Company” will have the slogan “Boring, it’s what we do,” Musk seems serious about the venture. He even updated his Twitter bio to show his new interest in the underground transportation business. It now read: “Tesla, SpaceX, Tunnels (yes, tunnels) & OpenAI.”
London-based company PLP Architecture recently revealed similar plans to ease the city’s notoriously heavy traffic. Its underground Cartube project uses autonomous electric vehicles controlled by a central AI control system to move people around the capital. The company says that cars traveling at 40mph beneath the roads could carry 40,000 passengers per hour.
Musk’s plans will no doubt involve digging traditional tunnels that regular cars can use, rather than filling them with self-driving Tesla’s. But creating tunnels is still a massive undertaking that's often impeded by governmental red tape. Perhaps the SpaceX CEO’s new position on Donald Trump’s advisory council will help speed up the process.