Virgin set to build hyperloop between Pune and Mumbai

Virgin set to build hyperloop between Pune and Mumbai

On Sunday, Richard Branson of Virgin Hyperloop announced that he had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the state to build the Mumbai-Pune hyperloop, which could take us from one city to the other at a nerve-jangling 1,080 km/hr.

The inauguration of the three-day Magnetic Maharashtra received a major boost at its inaugural session as British business tycoon Richard Branson announced development of the world's first operational hyperloop between Mumbai and Pune by 2025. "As our team's studies have found, the Pune-Mumbai route could result in $55 billion (Dh202billion; INR 350,000 crores) in socio-economic benefits, time savings, accident reduction and operational cost savings, over 30 years of operation".

"It was an honour to have Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Devendra Fadnavis, alongside us as we signed a Framework Agreement for the project".

The proposed project will begin after a six-month in-depth feasibility study to analyse and define route alignment, including environmental impact, economic and commercial viability, the regulatory framework and cost and funding model suggestions. The hyperloop, while reducing the travel distance to 14 to 25 minutes, will also connect the Mumbai and Navi Mumbai airports, he said.

"With Virgin Hyperloop One, we can create a sustainable infrastructure that will enhance Maharashtra's competitiveness and attract new investment and businesses". Five routes from India also got selected for the Hyperloop which was then taken forward with the government.

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Hyperloop transport system will allow for passengers, freight to be transported at super-fast speeds, more than 1,000 km per hour, which is faster than airlines, in a levitating pod that will travel in a vacuum tube. Also, he claimed that if it was trains that opened up India in the last century, he believes it could be hyperloops in the coming century. The 100 percent electric, efficient hyperloop system will help ease severe traffic congestion on the Mumbai-Pune Expressway and could reduce greenhouse gas emissions by up to 150,000 tonnes annually. "It will be an economic catalyst for the region and create tens of thousands of jobs for India's world-class manufacturing, construction, services and IT sectors, and aligns with Make in India initiatives".

"We are not pricing this for the wealthy, but it will be for the masses".

The feasibility study will build upon the findings of the pre-feasibility study signed in November 2017 between the Pune Metropolitan Regional Development Authority and Virgin Hyperloop One. Once this is completed, followed by the procurement stage to determine the public-private partnership structure, the construction of the hyperloop route will commence.

In a historic agreement with Virgin Hyperloop One, the state government of Maharashtra has flagged off an ambitious project to build the country's first ever Hyperloop route between Mumbai and Pune. "This has a potential to change the economic status of this state, you could employed in Pune and live in Mumbai or vice versa". The Memorandums of Understanding signed with the latter states governments past year to conduct feasibility studies were a step in this direction.

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