When billionaire Elon Musk sat down for a 40-minute TED talk last week in Vancouver, B.C., he could have started out talking about SpaceX’s rockets, Tesla’s electric vehicles, his Hyperloop mass-transit concept, his role as an adviser to President Donald Trump or the Neuralink vision for implanting computer chips in our brains.
Instead, he began with a boring topic – as in boring tunnels underground.
“We’re trying to dig a hole under L.A.,” Musk told TED head curator Chris Anderson. “This is to create the beginning of what will hopefully be a 3-D network of tunnels to alleviate congestion.”
Musk said traffic congestion was “soul-destroying,” and “particularly horrible in L.A.”
He showed off a video concept that calls for platforms he calls “car skates” to lower vehicles into the tunnel system from surface streets. Down in the tunnel network, cars could ride the electric-powered, rail-borne skates at speeds of up to 130 mph.