Elon Musk’s Boring Company has won permit approval and a franchise agreement to build the Vegas Loop under the Las Vegas Strip.
The 29-mile underground transportation system would connect with the Las Vegas Convention Center Loop that opened in June. That .8-mile link transports convention center goers through tunnels in electric Teslas and is Musk’s first fully commercial operational tunnel.
The Vegas Loop would have 51 stations throughout the Strip and into Clark County and would have a capacity of 57,000 passengers per hour. The Clark County Commission approved a special-use permit October 20 for The Boring Company to apply for and receive building permits to build the tunnels, according to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.
The commission also approved a franchise agreement with Boring that allows it to operate the Loop. Boring would pay to build the Loop and then collect fares from passengers. The commissions says no tax dollars would go toward funding the project. The franchise agreement also faces a vote by the Las Vegas City Council.
Along with the Strip, the Vegas Loop would connect to downtown, McCarran International Airport and Allegiant Stadium. The Boring Company says the goal is to eventually link Las Vegas and Los Angeles.
Boring and Las Vegas convention center representatives hailed the Vegas Loop as a relief to the city’s traffic congestion and an easier way to get visitors to their destinations. An example provided by Boring says a trip from the convention center to Mandalay Bay, which can take up to 30 minutes, would be shaved to 3 minutes with the Loop.
“The Vegas Loop will be a game-changer for our visitors in moving them around our exciting destination quickly, conveniently and in an entertaining ‘Only Vegas’ way,” says Steve Hill, LVCVA president and CEO.
The electric Teslas would travel through the tunnel directly to a passenger’s destination station with no stops along the way, unlike a subway system. The Boring Company provided the following sample trips and fares:
Musk envisions the Teslas reaching speeds of up to 150 mph and being autonomously driven. High-occupancy automated electric Teslas are also planned that would hold up to 16 passengers with sitting and standing room.
The convention center Loop, which opened in June, consists of a mix of 62 Tesla Models 3 and X that have drivers and reach top speed of 40 mph, because of the tunnels’ short length. They can hold up to five passengers.
The convention center tunnels are 40 feet underground. Riders can travel across the convention center campus in 2 minutes versus a 25-minute walk. The Loop debuted at World of Concrete this year. It cost $52.5 million to build. It has a capacity of 4,400 passengers per hour and three stations.
Check out this video of the convention center Loop: