Colorado Hyperloop: Legislative Loop

Colorado Hyperloop and the Colorado State Capital in Denver

 

Today is Election Day 2017, with various Colorado ballot measures and races, we thought it fitting to start keeping everyone in the Colorado Hyperloop: Legislative Loop.
Colorado Hyperloop is tracking current and future elected representatives who support, and those that do not, a future Colorado Hyperloop. Below is a brief outline as we start reaching out to these people as citizen lobbyists.

… government of the people, by the people, for the people…

-Abraham Lincoln

Mission:

Get in touch with people running for elected office in Colorado and ask them what they think of very fast hyperloop transportation system along with a North-South alignment from Fort Collins to Pueblo connecting all major cities and airports along the corridor.

The Problem:

The population boom along the front range overloads current transportation systems. Elected officials might not have heard about Hyperloop technology, so we want to inform them and ask them what they think of this solution. If the person running for office doesn’t like Hyperloop, we will ask them what they might suggest as an alternative and how infrastructure might look like to them in Colorado in the year 2040.

Summary Timeline:

The Colorado Gubernatorial Election is on November 6, 2018. In this month of November 2017, we will be contacting all candidates and will publish their responses at the end of the month.

Thank You:

Politics, like anything else in life, ultimately comes down to people.

Take Back Your Government – Morgan Carroll

Colorado Hyperloop wants to thank all the candidates running for office for being willing to work hard for us. We also want to build a rapport and relationship between future needs, suggestions, and input on how the Colorado Hyperloop can help all Colorado.

If you have any questions or would like to help out, please contact us.

One Step Closer to a Hyperloop Reality in Colorado 

Colorado Hyperloop Logo

Today is a proud day for the innovators and trailblazers of Colorado. Colorado Hyperloop is thrilled to see the Cheyenne-Denver-Pueblo corridor advance to the final stage of the Hyperloop One Global Challenge. We remain committed to working with other public, private, professional, and passionate teams to test the feasibility of a Hyperloop in our great state and ensure that Coloradoans have a voice in the design process. Colorado Hyperloop looks forward to working with CDOT, Rocky Mountain Hyperloop, and others to make Hyperloop a reality in Colorado.

Watch this space!

-Colorado Hyperloop Team

 

Read more:

Venture with Colorado Hyperloop

Colorado's Natural Hyperloops: RiversColorado Hyperloop is waiting for Hyperloop One’s results of the Hyperloop One Global Challenge. We are in communication with other teams and will create a blog post series of best practices from the other teams. Stay tuned!

  • Colorado Hyperloop will be profiling all the candidates for the 2018 Colorado elections. We wish to collect transparent and clear statements where each candidates (running for office and current representatives) stands on a I-25 and I-70 hyperloop connections.
  • Announcing a monthly meetup around Colorado! Starting August 6th in Denver at Union Station’s Terminal Bar at 6:30PM. Free RSVP here on Eventbrite.
  • Creation of a new online directory of pro-hyperloop organizations in Colorado! Details will be provided soon, contact us here for your input: https://coloradohyperloop.com/contact/
  • We are still seeking submissions for art or written interpretations of what a Colorado Hyperloop might look like in Colorado or how it could help you in the future! Use #COHyperloopHere for your art impact submissions or contact us here: https://coloradohyperloop.com/contact/ The goal is to start to think how art could be displayed or used to in transportation. Credit to RTD’s great use of art in their transportation projects: http://www.rtd-denver.com/artnTransit.shtml

Let us know what you think, and we look forward to getting to know you!

-Colorado Hyperloop Team

We want a Letter of Support from you!

Colorado Hyperloop Logo

Colorado Hyperloop will be presenting the Front Range Hyperloop corridor on April 5th & 6th at the Hyperloop One Global Challenge event in Washington, DC. We would like to gather Letters of Support from local communities, organizations and civic leaders to present to Hyperloop One in DC as well as industry, Federal, Congressional supporters that will be in attendance. We would like any government leaders or influencers to help support a vision of a Front Range Colorado Hyperloop so it can one day become reality. This is our chance to shine light on Colorado’s innovation, people and economy!

Please use this form here: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/6NWL9V6

 

 

New President, New Hyperloop

No more Front Range Smog...

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.

Hickenlooper Focuses on Issues of Rural Colorado, Transportation in State of the State

Priorities of the Governor of Colorado, Transportation

Governor Hickenlooper’s State of the State address, the medusa like TABOR continues to drag any new Colorado initiatives to a legislative thrashing of poisonous paralysis. Even without TABOR, everyone, including the Governor is worried about traffic congestion, specifically I-25 and I-70:

Add to the equation 2 million more residents projected to join us over the next 20 years, and we’ve got a math problem.  Our population grew by over 100,000 last year alone, so we need to invest now to ease congestion and mobility for today and tomorrow.   

We have transportation issues up and down I-25, along I-70 and other high-volume traffic corridors throughout the state.  

If we’re going to get these projects done, we must find new funding sources and leverage partnerships to pay for them.

Perfect timing for a Colorado Hyperloop to alleviate traffic!

Here’s an idea: TABOR will only go away with the support of rural Coloradans. So if the hyperloop is built along I-70, rural areas will improve because the state wide tax base due to more populated front range cities will enable rural parts of Colorado to get more money out of their elected members.

The Colorado Independent has a great summary of the response from the Governor’s charge:

Gov. John Hickenlooper used his annual State of the State speech last Thursday to chide lawmakers for failing to compromise last session on the state’s most pressing issues: the state’s budget, which he believes will have to be cut in 2016-17, changes to a hospital provider fee that could free up $1 billion over five years for transportation and education, and reforms to a state construction defects law that developers say prevents them from building affordable condominiums.
Last year’s partisan gridlock was due largely to split control of the General Assembly. It’s the same for this year – Republicans have a one-vote majority in the state Senate, and Democrats hold a three-vote advantage in the state House.
While democracy “wasn’t designed to be argument-free,” it also “isn’t designed to be combative to its own detriment,” Hickenlooper said. “Our conflicts aren’t serving us,” either at the state Capitol or in Washington, D.C. “We used to take pride in compromise…but in today’s politics we revel in getting our way without giving an inch, and stopping the other guy from getting anything done.”
Coloradans excel at working together after a tragedy, but that shouldn’t be the only reason lawmakers compromise on the state’s biggest challenges, Hickenlooper said.
The budget will be the focus of this year’s session. While the state’s economy is among the strongest in the nation, lawmakers anticipate issuing refunds to taxpayers as part of the 2016-17 budget. Those refunds, according to legislative economists, could range from $25 to $125 for individual taxpayers, depending on income levels.
At the same time, however, the state is nearly $900 million short of meeting constitutional requirements for funding K-12 education, and more than $3 billion is needed for critical roads and infrastructure repairs. In addition, Hickenlooper’s budget proposes increasing the K-12 funding shortfall by another $50 million, erasing the progress made last year in reducing the shortage.
Those dollars won’t come out of nowhere.
Hickenlooper’s solution: changing the state’s hospital provider fee, a per-bed surcharge paid by the state’s public and private hospitals, matched with federal dollars and then re-distributed to hospitals that provide medical care to the indigent. Hickenlooper and Democrats want to see the fee reclassified as an enterprise, akin to a state-run business, a provision allowed under TABOR, the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights.
Were the provider fee reclassified, it would free up about $1 billion in revenue over the next five years that Democrats say could go to K-12 education and transportation. Hickenlooper pleaded with lawmakers to address the issue.
While Democrats, business groups and the governor believe TABOR allows the change, Republicans, including Senate President Bill Cadman of Colorado Springs and Rep. Jon Becker, R-Fort Morgan, oppose it, calling it a maneuver to get around TABOR.

Hickenlooper spoke about rural Colorado concerns throughout the speech.
He highlighted the state’s Rural Economic Development Initiative program, which last year helped bring 100 jobs to Costilla County. Hickenlooper also discussed the effort to expand broadband services to “every corner and corral” in Colorado, by leveraging federal dollars, state assets and with the help of telecommunications reform laws passed in 2014.
Becker praised Hickenlooper’s frequent references to rural Colorado. “It’s rural Colorado that is suffering,” Becker said, adding that growth that has boosted the Front Range economy hasn’t made its way to the Eastern Plains.

Teams to follow in the SpaceX Pod Competition

These teams have been actively developing community and prototypes for the SpaceX Pod Competition. The SpaceX is helping with a design weekend January 15-16th in Texas, and the final hyperloop competition June of 2016. More posts to come on the teams, as well as updates in how they hyperloop will look like in Colorado, along the front range.

Team HyperLynx

Mechanical Engineering seniors design team at the University of Colorado, Denver will be building a Hyperloop pod and testing it at the Hyperloop competition

EuroLoop

Connecting Europe with the speed of vacuum, A Hyperloop forecast, designed by 10x Labs

rLoop

rLoop is a the non profit, open source, online think tank. Now designing a Hyperloop pod for SpaceX competition

 

Help Hyperloop Design Team of Mechanical Engineeringat University of Colorado

Great news in that a Colorado student engineering group called Team HyperLynx has team for the SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition! Best of luck! They have received press and you can check out their facebook page.

Our Mechanical Engineering senior design team at the University of Colorado, Denver will be building a Hyperloop pod and testing it at the Hyperloop competition, sponsored by SpaceX, in June 2016, held in Hawthorne, California. The pod will be designed and built at the University of Colorado, Denver by using advanced engineering techniques, supplemented with computer design and analysis.  Our project aims to raise enough money through Kickstarter, private companies, and competition funding to build a prototype Hyperloop pod.

Will be sure to follow their progress, and hopefully provide input from all of Colorado.

They are competing against dozens of other schools and even private companies to make a prototype for SpaceX.

“We use basically magnetic force to launch the pod inside the low pressure tube,” Cooper said…
The challenge for the students is to make their pod the fastest and the safest.

“We are going to design something that does not rely on external power sources or pressure to be safe,” Cooper added.

Aptly called Team Hyperlinx, the group is made up of mechanical engineering seniors

“We are trying to represent Denver, and make our school proud,” Cooper said.

 

SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition

A Hyperloop pod moving in a clear tube across the front range.

Major newsflash, SpaceX shows the Front Range of Colorado in latest information on the Hyperloop! Also, SpaceX will help build a wee test track!

THE OFFICIAL SPACEX HYPERLOOP POD COMPETITION

Since we first unveiled the idea for a new high-speed ground transport system called theHyperloop back in 2013, there has been a tremendous amount of interest in the concept. We are excited that a handful of private companies have chosen to pursue this effort.
Neither SpaceX nor Elon Musk is affiliated with any Hyperloop companies. While we are not developing a commercial Hyperloop ourselves, we are interested in helping to accelerate development of a functional Hyperloop prototype.

For this reason, SpaceX is announcing an open competition, geared towards university students and independent engineering teams, to design and build the best Hyperloop pod. To support this competition, SpaceX will construct a one-mile test track adjacent to our Hawthorne, California headquarters. Teams will be able to test their human-scale pods during a competition weekend at the track, currently targeted for June 2016. The knowledge gained here will continue to be open-sourced.

Break a pod!

If you are interested in participating in the Design or Build competitions, please complete the form below.

All submissions must be received no later than 5pm PDT on Sept. 15, 2015.

Download the full SpaceX Hyperloop Pod Competition guidelines here.

The New York Times has more information:

SpaceX, Mr. Musk’s rocket launch company, has announced a competition to design passenger vehicles for the Hyperloop, a proposed high-speed ground transport system.

The competition is intended to appeal to both university students and independent engineering teams, according to SpaceX documents provided to The New York Times.

SpaceX also plans to construct a one-mile test track adjacent to its headquarters in Hawthorne, Calif., which will be used as a testing and competition area for contestants, with a planned start date of June 2016.