From Dubai to Abu Dhabi in twelve minutes in the BIG/ Hyperloop One "autonomous transportation system"

Dubai Station
Video screen capture Big/ Dubai Station

For years we have been used the label "Dubious Dubai" when covering some of the bizarre architectural ideas proposed for the city and its neighbour Abu Dhabi. We stopped doing it when the realization set in that they were actually building this stuff and they were not dubious fantasies. But now we have this: an "autonomous transportation system" in a Hyperloop. And I am, once again, dubious. Watch the incredible video:


BIG & HYPERLOOP ONE REVEAL JOINT VISION FOR THE FUTURE OF MOBILITY from BIG on Vimeo.

While we in North America worry about whether self-driving cars will take to our roads, in Dubai they are planning to fill shiny cigar tubes with them and fire them through bigger tubes at 750 miles per hour between downtown Dubai and downtown Abu Dhabi, normally a two hour drive, in twelve minutes.

different podsBIG/ different kinds of pods/Video screen capture

It is really quite an amazing vision, and a serious upgrade from the Hyperloop One that we have previously shown; the transporter is now big enough to carry pods of different types, including meeting pods (for a 12 minute trip?) and freight pods.

pods assembledBIG/ Pods assembled in transporter/Video screen capture

These then self-assemble into the transporter units, which then get fired down the transporter tube and it is off to Dubai.

Hyperloop to dubaiBIG/ Hyperloop to dubai/Video screen capture

When they reach their destination, the individual pods then apparently detach from the transporter and drive on their own to the passenger's destination.

On the road in DubaiBig/ On the road in Dubai/Video screen capture

All this by 2020. It's all designed by Bjarke Ingels, who has certainly demonstrated that he can turn crazy visions into reality. BIG describes it as "autonomous, point-to-point and able to vastly simplify the experience of "getting from front-door to final destination."

Quoted in ArchDaily:

Together with BIG," Josh Giegel, President of Engineering, Hyperloop One has said, "we have worked on a seamless experience that starts the moment you think about being somewhere – not going somewhere." He continued: "We don’t sell cars, boats, trains, or planes. We sell time."

Can this be real, or is it totally dubious? It seems crazy, but we have seen China build a nationwide high speed rail system in a decade and Dubai build a city out of nothing in not much longer. Nothing surprises us anymore.

Tags: Dubai | Transportation

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