While most of the world has been happy to jump on to the Elon Musk-led Hyperloop bandwagon, there are still a lot of detractors who point out a slew of problems with the high-speed people mover. Chief among those problems seems to be the true costs and dangers of trying to sustain vacuum tubes with people moving hundreds of miles an hour inside them.
Arrivo, a company developing a competitor to Musk’s Hyperloop is now asserting that they can offer a better system for consumers, and they’ll shed added cost and risks of incorporating vacuum tubes into the process. Sure, we lose the joy of feeling like we are in the opening credits of The Jetsons or Futurama, but be may have less of a chance of ending up as paint splatter on the windshield of the universe.
The company is not unfamiliar with Hyperloop, In fact, it’s founder, Brogan BamBrogan is actually a former SpaceX and Hyperloop One engineer. Along with battling it out with his old employer over which transportation method is the best, it looks like they may also get a chance to battle out over who gets to the market first. Arrivo has just signed a deal to install their first system along existing roadways throughout the city of Denver Colorado.
So, how does it work? As we already mentioned, Arrivo doesn’t need to build tunnels. Instead it will install open magnetic tracks on existing roadways. This also adds a big distinction on the main purpose of Arrivo vs Hyperloop. While Hyperloop is designed to move long distances in short periods of time, Arrivo is designed to scale things down to movement within a given city. Here’s an example of the impact they estimate: For example, an Arrivo route from Denver Airport to the city’s downtown, a 32 mile journey that can take up to an hour in traffic, might instead take 8 minutes and cost as much as a toll road.
Research into setting up Denver’s Arrivo line is set to begin early next year with up to 200 engineers set to be working on the project by 2020. There’s currently no set debut for the actual Arrivo line, but Hyperloop hasn’t figured out how to put cement into their metal tunnels without them rusting out, so… I guess you can get ready for the world’s slowest, high-speed travel race?