- Elon Musk has secured $120 million of outside investment for The Boring Co., the tunneling and transportation startup that aims to build underground tunnels for hyperloop transportation projects that Musk founded in 2016.
- The cash infusion, in addition to the $113 million the company raised last year, signals continued interest from outside financial investors for the tunnel-based transportation company. The Boring Company is now valued at $920 million, according to Bloomberg.
- The new investors include 8VC, Craft Ventures, Vy Capital, Valor Capital and DFJ. Venture capitalist Steve Jurvetson, who serves on the board of directors of both Tesla and Spacex, told Bloomberg that Boring is “a great example of the disruptive playbook we look for.”
Musk has stated that he wants The Boring Co. to meet the needs of “personalized mass transit” by prioritizing pedestrians and building high-speed transit systems in tunnels under major cities. Since founding the company, Musk has pursued several construction projects and deals, including a previously reported plan for a new tunnel connecting Los Angeles to Culver City in California and its first commercial transportation project at the Las Vegas Convention Center in May.
The company’s Las Vegas project, called the LVCC Loop, involves an underground transportation system that will lessen transportation times of 15 minutes to one minute. Passengers will be transported via autonomous electric vehicles (AEVs) at speeds up to 155 mph. The LVCC Loop will not involve Hyperloop technology, a hallmark of The Boring Co., and is forecasted to be completed in December 2020.
The project will be a test of Boring’s ability to complete a project for less money than competing contractors while navigating government and municipal regulations.
For the ill-fated Los Angeles project, the company released a map that outlined a proposed 6.5 mile underground tunnel system that would include thousands of small stations to help alleviate traffic congestion. However, it withdrew its plans after several resident groups sued the city over its proposal to exempt the tunnel from environmental reviews.
Setbacks aside, Boring still plans has other tunnel endeavors across the U.S. Most notably, Musk has pitched the following projects:
- A ferry between the Dodger Stadium tunnel and subway lines.
- A project that would connect Washington, D.C., and Baltimore.
- A $48.6 million bid to build a people mover underneath the Las Vegas Convention Center.
- Two 18-mile tunnels between downtown Chicago and O’Hare International Airport.
Despite the new funding, Musk and The Boring Co. still have much to prove in their ability to deliver projects to the public, say critics including Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman.