After the investment, Elon Musk’s The Boring Company is valued at nearly $5.7 billion

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The Boring Company, Elon Musk’s attempt to reduce traffic by tunneling Teslas, has raised $675 million, which it plans to use to build more of its Loop projects, a primarily underground transportation system that offers travel from point to point where people board Teslas SUVs.

Boring Company’s new funding, announced Wednesday, comes from venture capital firms as well as real estate firms. Sequoia, a leading Silicon Valley company – which has invested in Musk before – co-led the investment with Vy Capital. The deal values ​​the Boring Company at nearly $5.7 billion.

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The One Loop system is already operating in Las Vegas with three stations and a 1.7-mile tunnel at the Las Vegas Convention Center. There are plans to expand the system across the Las Vegas strip, with 51 stations over 29 miles.

Boring Company is also developing a project in Fort Lauderdale, Florida and is in talks with San Antonio, Texas. The company has already announced projects in Chicago, Washington, DC and Los Angeles, but has not completed them.

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Musk faced a lawsuit from hapless Los Angeles neighbors and got into more trouble when Chicago elected a new mayor. Licenses have not been completed to proceed with the 2017 DC to Baltimore project.

“We are still very excited and want to move forward,” Fort Lauderdale Mayor Dean Trantalis told CNN Business.

The billionaire said the government is collaborating with the Boring Company on engineering issues for the project, which would connect the city center to a nearby beach. Musk declined to say when it might be completed.

Critics question whether essentially operating a subway system, but with cars instead of trains, is an efficient use of tunnels, which can cost as much as $1 billion per kilometer to build. Boring Company says it is developing cheaper tunneling technology and argues that its system is superior to traditional subway systems because travel will be point-to-point and will not make planned stops like other stations. (But they can potentially be slowed down by tunnel traffic ahead of them).

Musk, Tesla’s CEO, had previously presented a grander vision for the Boring Company, with people being whisked around cities in dedicated autonomous vehicles at speeds of up to 120 mph. But the reality so far, at least in Las Vegas, has involved human drivers operating what resemble standard Teslas at 35 mph.

Boring Company still says it plans to eventually transition to fully autonomous operations, which will reduce the cost of operations.

Sequoia said in a blog post that the Boring Company is at a “tipping point”.

“The next few years are about 10x the performance, making their systems quickly reusable and fully autonomous,” he wrote.

Boring Company says its next-generation tunnel digging machine is designed to be able to operate remotely and autonomously, without needing anyone. His current iteration of the machine, called the Prufrock, is designed to dig up to a mile a week. It is worth noting that digging tunnels faster is key to reducing costs.

Boring Company said it also plans to build utility and cargo tunnels. The company did not respond to a request for comment.

Source: CNN Brasil

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