Yes, you read it right. Virgin has signed an agreement with the Indian government in order to bring Hyperloop One into the market, and run in between Pune to Mumbai beginning ith an operational demonstration track.
Virgin Hyperloop One has announced that it has done the paper work with Maharashtra Govt. who intends to build a hyperloop between Pune and Mumbai. Regarding it, the company’s chairman Sir Richard Branson signed the framework agreement today to start the development of the route.
Hyperloop will reinvent transportation to eliminate the barriers of distance and time. And the promise of the Hyperloop One in India is 150km in just 25 minutes. The time Hyperloop One promising the distance between Mumbai to Pune would take as long as getting food delivered to one’s doorstep today.
The Maharashtra government signed a framework agreement with US-based Virgin Hyperloop One to set up a “hyperloop,” a new high-speed transport system, between the two western cities. In fact, it could also potentially reduce inter-city travel time to just 25 minutes from the current 55 minutes ( when compared by flight, apart from the time taken to get to and from the respective airports) or 2.5 hours by road.
The Hyperloop route would link central Pune, Navi Mumbai International Airport, and Mumbai and connect 26 million people, supporting 150 million passenger trips per year. The company further mentioned that the route plan could result in USD $55 billion (Rs. 350,000 crores) in socio-economic benefits, time savings, accident reduction and operational cost savings with 30 years of operations.
Currently, the Hyperloop is an experimental mode of surface transport, refined by maverick entrepreneur Elon Musk. It involves a magnetically-propelled capsule that carries passengers or cargo through a low-pressure tube at over 1,000 kilometers per hour. Something like a bullet train in Japan? Virgin Hyperloop One, backed by British investor and founder of the Virgin group, the first company to test the technology in MAY 2016.
It also opens up a new possibility of job creation and saves more than 90 million hours of travel time. The Hyperloop One project is said to begin with a six-month in-depth feasibility study to analyze and define the route alignment including environmental impact, the economic and commercial aspects of the route, the regularity framework, and of course, the cost and funding model recommendations.
The development of the Hyperloop will be carried out in two phases: Virgin Hyperloop One will first set up a demonstration track with three years. In the second phase, it will set the entire route over seven years. The proposed route will pass through the upcoming Navi Mumbai International Airport and eventually undertake 150 million passenger-trips a year.
Note: The Hyperloop will also transport lightweight cargo units between Mumbai port and Pune.
Neither the company or the Maharashtra government has revealed the quantum of investments the project will involve. Emails sent to Virgin Hyperloop One remain unanswered. The hyperloop’s success in India depends a lot upon the regulatory framework.
Commenting on the same, Sir Richard Branson said:
I believe Virgin Hyperloop One could have the same impact upon India in the 21st century as trains did in the 20th century. The Pune-Mumbai route is an ideal first corridor as part of a national hyperloop network that could dramatically reduce travel times between India’s major cities to as little as two hours. Virgin Hyperloop One can help India become a global transportation pioneer and forge a new world-changing industry.
Historically, land acquisition, labor laws, and customs regulations have caused huge delays in infrastructure projects in the country.
Stay tuned for more updates on Virgin Hyperloop One in India!
(Source: Virgin Hyperloop One)