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Missouri Hyperloop feasibility study confirms viability

by Mary Rooney | Nov 06, 2018
Black & Veatch released its Missouri Hyperloop feasibility study, which confirmed the viability of a hyperloop route along Interstate 70, and it's the first-time feasibility numbers have been released in the U.S. for a hyperloop system. 

The nine-month feasibility study conducted by Black & Veatch and Olsson Associates evaluated several aspects concerning the I-70 route that would connect Kansas City to Columbia and St. Louis, including social impact, potential station locations, route alignments, regulatory issues and rights-of-way access.

The study confirmed that the proposed route between St. Louis and Kansas City would shave travel time to 28 minutes. By car, it takes about 3.5 hours. Travel to Columbia from St. Louis or Kansas City would take about 15 minutes, compared with today's two hours. 

With gas prices currently at about $3 per gallon, it costs about $30 to drive to St. Louis. If prices continue to rise, the cost of 10 gallons of gas could rise above the predicted cost for a one-way hyperloop ticket — about $30.

In addition, the flat terrain would help cut down on construction costs. The Missouri Department of Transportation also owns or manages the rights-of-way along I-70, which eases the path to construction.

Another compelling factor for Missouri is its central location, which could accelerate the build-out of a regional and eventually national network for transporting goods and people. 

The study also found that less time spent on the road could result in a savings of $410 million a year, and would lead to fewer accidents along I-70, creating an additional savings of as much as $91 million a year.

Read the full article at the Kansas City Business Journal.

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