Hyperloop, which uses magnetic technology to move tubes at high speed, will make it possible to travel from Mumbai to Pune in 25 minutes.
After Karnataka spoke about signing in Virgin Hyperloop last year, Maharashtra has followed suit to create a Hyperloop system, which will allow passengers to travel hundreds of kilometres in minutes. The hyperloop concept was introduced by Elon Musk, and Hyperloop One is working to commercialise the idea to move passengers and cargo at airline speeds, but at a fraction of the cost of air travel.
The company also has an agreement with Maharashtra to build a system between Mumbai and Pune, which would reduce travel time between the two cities to just 25 minutes from the three hours at present. The system will connect Navi Mumbai International Airport, and benefit 26 million people and ease the burden on local trains.
“We have signed an agreement with Maharashtra to build a Virgin Hyperloop between Mumbai and Pune,” says Virgin Group Chairman Richard Branson. He says that the Pune-Mumbai route could result in Rs 3.5 lakh crore in socio-economic benefits. Additionally, he observed that the fifth generation transport system will create tens of thousands of jobs.
There is reason why Maharashtra followed Karnataka. Cities need to be decongested over the next decade. Let us take Bengaluru for example.
Did you know people in Bengaluru lose 60 crore hours and Rs 3,700 crore a year to road congestion?
In a bid to try and solve this productivity problem, the Karnataka government, in an unprecedented move, brought in Virgin Hyperloop One to study how bottlenecks in transportation can be freed up.
There is an enormous need to free up this congested city where infrastructure simply collapses during the rains. The traffic jams can be grueling, with commuters sometimes being stuck on the roads for three hours to traverse 30 km.
Enter Hyperloop, which uses magnetic technology to move tubes at high speed. “We are doing a feasibility study with the company, which will be ready soon and after that, we will decide how to set up hyperloop corridors across the State,” said Priyank Kharge, Minister, IT and BT, Sci-tech and Tourism, Government of Karnataka.
Hyperloop will make it possible to travel from Chennai to Bengaluru in 23 minutes. “We will bring enormous economic benefits to the state at two-thirds of the cost of normal rail,” said Nick Earle, Senior VP of Operations at Virgin Hyperloop 1.
The feasibility study will be ready in six weeks. The company, on receiving a contract from the government, will ensure that it outsources manufacturing of the loop infrastructure to local companies.
“This will create local jobs,” Nick said.
Last year, the Andhra Pradesh government signed a MoU with Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) for developing the project.