Elon Musk’s Boring Company has won approval to expand its Vegas Loop underground transportation system into downtown Las Vegas.
Construction on the city section could start as early as 2023. Parts of the system already under construction in Clark County, including under The Strip, could start seeing electric Teslas transporting riders early next year as well.
In February, Boring announced its tunnel boring machine Prufrock-1 had broken through the first link of its Vegas Loop, under Resorts World. That link will connect with the Las Vegas Convention Center Loop that opened in June 2021.
The Vegas Loop is planned to consist of 34-plus miles of tunnels with 55 or more stations. Five of those miles will be under downtown Las Vegas, and five stations will be built. It is planned to have a capacity of 57,000 passengers per hour, reduce traffic congestion in popular tourist areas and speed up travel for riders.
The cost to build the system, which will also extend to Harry Reid Airport and Allegiant Stadium, will be covered by Boring and agreements with private resorts. The city says no local tax money will be involved. The system will be paid for through passenger fares
The city council on June 15 unanimously approved a 50-year nonexclusive agreement that allows Boring to use city right of way to build and operate the system. It is similar to an agreement approved in October with Clark County, where 29 miles of the Loop will be built.
The tunnel system will be used to transport riders in Tesla’s X and Y models, similar to the company’s first commercially operational system, the .8-mile underground Loop at the Las Vegas Convention Center. The Resorts World station being constructed will be the first section of the Vegas Loop and is expected to open next year to connect to the convention center tunnels.
The convention center loop debuted at 2021 World of Concrete and consists of Model 3 and X Teslas traveling through tunnels at up to 40 mph. They are operated by drivers. Boring has said it ultimately plans for its tunnel system to be run by autonomous vehicles and reach speeds up to 150 mph. Company plans are to eventually link Las Vegas and Los Angeles by Tesla tunnels.