A transportation system that could eventually see people travel between Edmonton and Calgary in about 45 minutes has taken another step forward.
UK-based Broughton Capital Group, in cooperation with China-East Resources Import & Export Co., have agreed in principle to provide a combined US$550M finance and Master EPC arrangement respectively, to accelerate the development of a TransPod Line between Edmonton and Calgary.
The high-speed transportation system is being developed to carry passengers and cargo in a low-pressure tube environment at 1,000 km/h. Described as an aircraft without wings, the vehicles would be powered by electrically driven magnetic propulsion, according to the company.
TransPod said the Master EPC arrangement is expected to involve a “significant contribution” from Canadian contractors.
“As the first and only company to confirm such finance for a multibillion-dollar tube-transportation infrastructure project, TransPod is proud of its commitment to driving growth in Alberta through true innovation and partnership,” Sebastien Gendron, co-founder and CEO of TransPod, said in a news release.
“The construction and operation of a TransPod Line will help Albertans move around easily, create new jobs and facilitate investment into the region. With the confidence of our investors and the government of Alberta, we will deliver on a joint vision of a progressive, sustainable and growing economy.”
A feasibility study released last year estimated the project would create up to 140,000 jobs and add $19.2 billion to the region’s GDP throughout the construction.
The study also projects the tube-based transportation would be able to make the 300-kilometre trip between Edmonton and Calgary in 45 minutes, for an estimated cost of $90 per person.
“TransPod is an exciting, game-changing leader for the future of green infrastructure and transportation in Canada and beyond,” said Terry Parker, executive director of Building Trades of Alberta. TransPod has partnered with Building Trades of Alberta to leverage its regional expertise to support regional job development and provide employee training for the TransPod Line.
“Not only will it help Canada tackle its carbon goals, the Alberta TransPod project will create thousands of well-paying, community-supporting jobs for Alberta’s skilled trades workers, including those from Indigenous communities, women, new Canadians and apprentices,” Parker said.
In August 2020, TransPod signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the government of Alberta to support the development of its hyperloop system.
Also Tuesday, TransPod outlined the next phases of the Alberta project:
- Short-term: Research and development; construction permit; environmental assessment; land acquisition (present-2024)
- Medium-term: Test track construction, high-speed tests, and certification (2023-2027)
- Long-term: Construction of a full inter-city line between Edmonton and Calgary (to begin in 2027)
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