Although the Hyperloop Project might sound like a cool idea, it still has a long way to go. Currently, construction is set to begin near the end of this year, but it is currently in limbo because multiple items need to be checked off.

Some of those items include the loop's alignment, land acquisition, and permits. One item, in particular, is that infrastructure like the TransPod's loop needs to be recognized by Alberta's Railway Act to be able to secure some land between Calgary and Edmonton which it currently is not, according to co-founder and CEO Sebastian Gendron.

One thing TransPod has committed to is adding a station in Red Deer, making the total number of stations planned so far five.

 "The first one being downtown Edmonton, the second one being the airport of Edmonton, the third one Red Deer, the fourth one would be Calgary airport, and the last one being downtown Calgary."

When asked if other stations could be added along the way, for example, Airdrie, he said they will have to see and try to answer all the needs of the communities along the way.

On the TransPod, according to Gendron, the TransPod will be split 60/40, 60 per cent being light time-sensitive freight for companies (FedEx, Amazon, UPS and more) to move between cities faster than usual. The other 40 per cent will be riders between the cities.

"I would say on average when it will be full of passengers at any given time, between 5000 and 10,000 passengers per hour."

Demand will still be a big factor in how many people the train would be able to hold and commute, explained Gendron.

TransPod has created and started testing a prototype of the vehicle it claims to travel between Calgary and Edmonton in 45 minutes.

Here are the initial three phases announced last year:

  • Research and development; construction permits; environmental assessment; land acquisition (present-2024) 

  • Test track construction, high-speed tests, and certification (2023-2027) 

  • Construction of a full inter-city line between Edmonton and Calgary (to begin in 2027) 

As of right now, the Alberta Government has not committed any money or approved the project.

It is projected that this hyperloop will cost around $90 per person. 

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