Dubai: Dubai will have a 20km-long prototype of the Hyperloop transportation system operating at a speed of 1,200km/h by 2020, officials said on Tuesday.
The network will eventually connect key parts of the city, while expanding to other emirates and beyond.
The plan to build the futuristic transport network that is set to change the meaning of time and space in the next few years was announced at a press conference in Dubai on Tuesday.
The Roads and Transport Authority signed an agreement with Hyperloop One, a US-based firm, to develop the high-speed technology. The agreement mandates the company to start a feasibility study on the construction and operation of the network.
According to Josh Geigel, president of engineering at Hyperloop One, this is the first such agreement signed between the Los Angeles-based company and a transportation authority anywhere in the world.
“We believe this is the first step towards making the technology a reality and we are looking forward to having the prototype ready by 2020,” said Geigel, speaking to Gulf News.
Hyperloop has also signed an agreement with DP World to study the implementation of the technology in Jebel Ali port.
He said that the proposed network is spread across 200 kilometres, but the initial prototype will be built on a stretch of 20 kilometres. However, the location for the prototype has not yet been decided.
“That is what the study is all about, to determine where we will build it, what will be the cost and how we will build it,” he said.
According to Geigel, the major idea is to connect the passenger and freight lines and extend them all the way to Abu Dhabi and beyond.
The plan is to smoothly connect self-driving vehicles with the Hyperloop technology and create a seamless network to provide end-to-end mobility.