Colo. DOT partners to build Hyperloop-inspired system

Me Photo Headshot
Updated Nov 20, 2017
An artist’s rendering of the planned Arrivo high-speed transit system in Denver. By Nick Harper (CIG)An artist’s rendering of the planned Arrivo high-speed transit system in Denver. By Nick Harper (CIG)

High-speed transportation startup company Arrivo plans to build its first ultra-high-speed transit system in Denver.

The system, inspired by the Hyperloop concept, would reduce travel times from 1 hour between such locales as the Denver International Airport and downtown to less than 10 minutes.

The Colorado Department of Transportation and the Denver area toll authority have entered a partnership with the company to build the Arrivo system.

Arrivo, which is based in Los Angeles and Aurora, Colorado, will build a test track for the new system beside the E-470 toll highway in Denver, where the system would eventually run. The plan also involves Arrivo building its Engineering and Technology Center in the Denver area and adding about 200 jobs and $15 million in investment by 2020, according to CDOT.

The system would use technology similar to the Hyperloop concept, which has passenger vehicles inside a tube that levitate by magnetic force and are powered by electricity, reaching speeds of up to 700 mph. While the Hyperloop concept has been introduced for connecting large cities, Arrivo envisions its system as a regional service, with trips less than 20 minutes. The Arrivo vehicles would travel up to 200 mph.

“Passengers and cargo arrive quickly and efficiently at extremely low cost,” says Brogan BamBrogan, co-founder of Arrivo. “…Arrivo will end traffic and future-proof regional mobility.”

The plan involves trips between the airport and downtown Denver, Boulder and downtown, Lone Tree and downtown. All of these trips are more than an hour’s drive now, but would take less than 10 minutes each on the Arrivo system, the company says.

“Arrivo’s system is an additional layer of transportation designed to complement existing modes of transportation, connect with the airport, the metro, and even allow people to use it with their own car,” BamBrogan says.

CDOT sees the system as a way to break the traffic jams that plague the area’s commuters.

“We are reaching max roads in many cases in Colorado,” said Shailen Bhatt, executive director of CDOT. “Arrivo has a unique and practical approach to implementing Hyperloop technology to eliminate traffic and dramatically improve the way people and goods move around the city.”

Arrivo and CDOT will first conduct a feasibility study for the first commercial route of the system beside the toll highway, which Arrivo plans to have operating in Denver within five years, CDOT says.