India grants infrastructure project status to build the world’s first ultra-fast hyperloop project

Hyperloop Project in India/ Image: Virgin One @Twitter

India’s richest state Maharashtra has granted infrastructure project status for a $10-billion (700 billion rupees) plan to build the world’s first ultra-fast hyperloop project, with an aim to connect India’s financial capital Mumbai with the neighbouring city of Pune.

The Hyperloop works on the principle of magnetic levitation to propel pods inside airless tubes and the air bearing are implemented to levitate the passenger pods, which can shuttle people and freight at speeds of up to 750 miles (1,200 km) per hour. The top speed of Hyperloop is claimed to be 1220 km per hour.

Granting the infrastructure project status by the government will enable fast-track land acquisition over an area of 117.5-km (73 miles) where the shuttle will connect two cities in about 35 minutes.

“This project would mark the beginning of a new era in the country’s transport sector,” the state government said in a statement late on Wednesday.

Indian Government policy Policy Think Tank NITI Ayog’s CEO Amitabh Kanth tweeted saying, “Maharastra takes lead! Congratulate @dev_fadnavis & GOM for leading the world on hyperloop deployment. @HyperloopOne project approval by State is a major step towards embracing new-age transportation technologies. Huge Scope 4 development of local resources with new mobility.”

Although the plan’s original proponent was a consortium of the United Arab Emirates’ DP World and Virgin Hyperloop One, which submitted the initial proposal, the project is to be opened up to other competing bids.

Phase I of the plan envisages an 11.8 kilometre (7.33 mile) long track to be built in up to 2-2.5 years with an estimated investment of $724 million (50 billion Indian rupees) in Pune, the government said.

In a separate statement, DP World said it was willing to invest $500 million in private capital to complete the project’s first phase to prove that the technology is safe and viable.

On Twitter, this was jointly announced by Virgin One, DP World and their Group Chairman & CEO of DP World, Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem

The project is expected to cost about $10.1 Billion (700 billion rupees), the state government said, and it is still unclear how the project will be funded.

The route from Mumbai to Pune is one of India’s busiest, with roughly 75 million passenger journeys each year.

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The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Kootneeti Team

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Akshat Verma

Akshat Verma is an Associate Editor at The Kootneeti. His area of interest includes India-Pakistan-China relations and Indian Foreign Policy. He can be reached at team@thekootneeti.com || Twitter: @akshat_ver

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