New President, New Hyperloop

Without getting too political, The New York Times has an article how the Trump Administration could set goals for massive infrastructure projects.  In Trump-Size Idea for a New President: Build Something Inspiring, we read that Colorado is mentioned for one such project:

Denver I-70 east: Denver is trying to put a section of Interstate 70 underground to reconnect the city’s urban fabric and use four acres of the reclaimed space for parks, bike paths and walks, and farmers’ markets. The green space could be much larger, further reducing pollution. Cost: $1.17 billion.

I would like to point out that the Hyperloop is probably the cleanest and fastest transit option ever… but it would not necessary be on I-70 axis, more of a I-25 North-South corridor. But imagine less noise and pollution more Parks and GreenWays along I-25!

For investing improvements for I-70 and I-25,  CDOT needs to balance projected growth along these corridors and balance political views between rural and urban areas (read economic):

Cities are trending Democratic and are on an upward economic shift, with growing populations and rising property values. Rural areas are increasingly Republican, steadily shedding population for decades, and as commodity and energy prices drop, increasingly suffering economically.

The political divide goes even deeper than simply between the two parties.

“The urban-rural split this year is larger than anything we’ve ever seen,” said Scott Reed, a political strategist for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce who has advised previous GOP campaigns.

Will people in rural areas feel that a city connecting hyperloop will benefit them? What kind of support will these groups give to a new infrastructure that includes city centric hyperloops?

Conversely, will city based advocates against costly highway lanes, but for pedestrian friendly cities support the hyperloop?

Also, to note is the role of national infrastructure advocacy groups. They will try and shape urban and rural transit policy. Yet these too are sometimes split in supporting new infrastructure goals for a new administration.

Finally, there would be those that would point to bolstering already present infrastructure and private  company services like Greyhound busses, espically within Colorado. 

So it is up to CDOT to plan on how to work with a new Federal priority list. But there is already chatter, and outright public backing of a certain hyperloop company, as well as in the greater Hyperloop community that a Trump administration might be pro-hyperloop.

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