Australians might have a new way to travel soon: the Hyperloop, a futuristic transport concept that promises to redefine the very idea of high speed travel. The transportation method has clinched several partnerships with countries, despite the fact that its first real test track is still being built.
Now, officials from Hyperloop One are proposing that the Hyperloop could eventually merge the cities of Sydney and Melbourne, creating one huge megacity. The best part? Travel time is around an hour.
“We’ll make Sydney and Melbourne really connected to each other. If you connect two cities with Hyperloop, you get, effectively, a sort of global city punching above its weight in a global economy,”says Hyperloop One VP Alan James to news.com.au.
The comments come just after Hyperloop One, and rival company CLARA, presented evidence to a parliamentary committee on infrastructure, transport, and cities. Both are jockeying for federal support in bringing to life their vision for the high speed rail in Australia.
While both are anchored in high speed systems, CLARA relies on more traditional high speed rail ideas. Meanwhile, Hyperloop One wants Australia to be the first real test case for the Hyperloop concept in an actual city.
For those unfamiliar with the technology, Hyperloop is essentially a passenger/cargo carrying capsule that zips around in a tube at 1000+ km/h (620+ mph). Those speeds promise to change the very urban landscape.
For example, the Australian Hyperloop sees travel between the two cities to be less than an hour. With such a short travel time, distances and areas are opened up, creating more economic growth.
But the system does face a lot of skepticism. A real Hyperloop test hasn’t really been done, so we can’t see the effects on humans or cargo that travel on it. Also, there are no estimates on the massive infrastructure costs that could be associated with building Hyperloop tracks.
If it were to work out, though, James states that a ticket from Sydney to melbourne would be booked via an app and cost less than a full-priced, last minute plane ticket.