Elon Musk says The Boring Company’s first car elevator is nearly operational

Elon Musk’s tunnel venture The Boring Company is plugging away on its first tunnel section, and it’s not just a hole in the ground – the multi-co. CEO noted on Twitter that the car/pod elevator that will be used to bring vehicles below ground to the tunnel is likely going to be operational next week.

In case you missed Musk’s big reveal for The Boring Company’s vision, the basic idea is that surface access points will allow cars and other vehicles to drive on to elevator panels from regular surface routes. Those will descend to a tunnel network, where the car or cargo will slide into the flow of traffic aboard a sled; no one’s actually driving in the underground routes, but instead these automated sleds are ferrying them around in tight synchronization with one another. Tunnels will stack, crisscrossing and overlapping each other for maximum efficiency across many stacked layers.

Musk provided an updated look at the progress made at his Hawthorne SpaceX HQ on the Boring Co’s first tunnel segment, and also showed the newly installed steel skeleton structure that will form the base of the elevator. This will be “operating” by next week, Musk says. Sounds like maybe some Boring Company folks are working through the long weekend.

There’s still a long way to go before The Boring Company’s work results in an actual transportation network cities can think about allowing someone else to build and operate, but this should result in some spectacular demonstrations of the whole idea behind the plan in action. Musk has said that The Boring Company occupies a tiny fraction of his time vs. his work with SpaceX and Tesla, but he’s clearly currently very hyped on the idea of subterranean solutions.