The mayors of the cities of Miami and Fort Lauderdale will be heading to the west coast Wednesday, investigating whether it would be possible to build an underground tunnel for commuter rail service in the area.
The group of South Florida officials will be visiting the Las Vegas loop and the California test tunnel, the latest venture of Tesla Inc. founder Elon Musk, who is looking for ways to reduce traffic and congestion by offering new low-cost tunneling construction technology.
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"His tunneling technology could be a real game-changer for us regarding transportation and quality of life," Trantalis stated in his newsletter. "Not only would it allow commuter rail to move forward and solve the New River issue, but we could tunnel the system under major Fort Lauderdale intersections to relieve congestion on our roadways."
In 2018, Musk's firm, The Boring Company, built a single-tunnel, 1.1-mile loop for $10 million. Musk later won a contract with the Las Vegas Convention Center to build a two-tunnel loop to span its vast campus. The 1-mile network cost $52 million.
In addition to The Boring Co.'s executives, Trantalis will also meet with their geologists and operations managers. He will also meet with Las Vegas officials and their experts who hired Musk's firm and oversaw the completion of the Loop.
"We’ve already had a couple initial conversations with The Boring Co., and they are interested in helping us address our situation," Trantalis said. "We hope that the next step will be for The Boring Co. team to come to Fort Lauderdale and see how we think their technology could be put to work."