While Colorado hits brakes on building a hyperloop, private sector engineers are continuing the chase
So Colorado isn’t getting a hyperloop.
At least not the one promised a few years ago, when the state won the transportation jackpot of futuristic travel.
The state’s new transportation boss said this week that efforts to pursue pods that speed along custom tunnels at more than 600 mph isn’t being pursued by the Colorado Department of Transportation. But that’s not stopping hyperloop enthusiasts from taking the smaller steps necessary to build something resembling the shiny metal pods and track.
“It’s been quieter,” said Steve Cohn, a retired scientist from the National Center for Atmospheric Research who now is on the board of Hyperloop Advanced Research Partnership, or HARP. “That might be a naturally good thing because it takes time for things to develop properly.”
HARP, which organized the Global Hyperloop Conference this week at the Colorado School of Mines, started up after a group unsuccessfully pitched a hyperloop plan for Colorado. The gathering of academics, analysts, engineers and transportation enthusiasts focused on the minutiae of building a hyperloop: securing the rights of way, tunneling costs, safety standards and the carbon footprint.
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In terms of area, it’s the county’s smallest conservation deal ever. In terms of location, it’s one of the county’s rarest acquisitions.