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Industryweek 23167 072017 Elonmusk Justinsullivan2

Musk Claims US Approval For World’s Longest Tunnel

July 20, 2017
Tesla boss claims to have garnered verbal government approval to build a 220-mile hyperloop tunnel from New York to Washington, D.C. — but is he just trying to drum up interest?

Elon Musk says he won “verbal” government approval to build the world’s longest tunnel for an ultra-high-speed train line to connect New York to Washington, D.C. 

The train, known as a hyperloop, would make the 220-mile connection in 29 minutes, Musk said in a Twitter post Thursday. He provided few details, and a spokesperson for his new digging enterprise, called the Boring Company, didn’t immediately respond to a request for more information.

It took two years alone for Virginia to complete the geotechnical and environmental studies for Virginia's Chesapeake Bay tunnel project that's about to begin, said Aubrey Layne, the state's secretary of transportation. 

“It can’t be more than just, ‘Hey, this looks like an idea we’re going to let you explore,’’’ Layne said of Musk’s tweet. 

Whatever this new “verbal approval” means, the posts on Twitter are probably little more than an attempt to draw interest in future Boring Co. projects. Musk himself suggested as much Thursday. David Lee, a Silicon Valley reporter for the BBC, questioned Musk’s promises: “Verbal? Not on the dotted line? Seems premature to announce ... unless you’re drumming up support for the project?”

Musk’s response: “Support would be much appreciated!”

By Tom Randall, with assistance from Max Chafkin, Jennifer Epstein and Mark Niquette.

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