Virgin Hyperloop’s new $500 million Hyperloop Certification Center will be located in West Virginia.
Virgin Hyperloop announced on October 8 that it had selected West Virginia to erect its Hyperloop Certification Center (HCC). The company will actually spend $500 million for the new facility. It further pushes its agenda to craft a high-speed transport technology, which it had developed for years.
The New Facility
The state of West Virginia announced the project through a press conference, which included Gov. Jim Justice and Virgin Group founder Richard Branson. They also unveiled a partnership between the state and the company to build the multi-million facility in Tucker County, West Virginia. The Verge reports that Virgin Hyperloop One will test, develop, and validate its hyperloop technology in the state.
Excited to announce that West Virginia has been chosen as the location for the Hyperloop Certification Center! Read more: https://t.co/Biq0b7XlET
— Virgin Hyperloop (@virginhyperloop) October 8, 2020
Not only will the new facility advance the hyperloop project. The company said it will also create thousands of new jobs from different sectors, particularly in manufacturing, construction, operations, and technology. Moreover, Virgin estimates that it could bring 150-200 engineers and technicians on-board. That’s on top of the 13,000 positions in different key areas.
So far, not one fully-capable hyperloop in the world has carried actual human passengers. Basically, a hyperloop transports whatever it brings in a capsule at extremely high-speeds. Originally, Tesla chief executive Elon Musk proposed the idea, CNN Business reports. In 2017, Virgin had bought Hyperloop One.
Several months ago, the US Department of Transportation and the Non-Traditional and Emerging Transportation Technology Council laid out a regulatory framework that will guide hyperloop companies in the US. It signifies the path to bring hyperloop in the US. Also, it can indicate the possibility of federal funding to bring the technology to the country.
Towards the Realization of Hyperloop Transport
In a statement, Branson expressed his excitement over the project. Moreover, he noted that the HCC serves as the “start of the hyperloop journey” for West Virginia, the US, and the world. The Virgin Group founder also said that the company is a step “closer to making hyperloop travel a reality for people everywhere.”
Meanwhile, Gov. Justice also welcomed the Virgin Hyperloop on the state, noting that West Virginia is the “best kept secret” on the East Coast. “Just look at all this announcement, and all it will bring to our state—investment, jobs, and tremendous growth.”
The state governor added: “When we approached Virgin Hyperloop, I told them that we would do everything we could to bring this opportunity to West Virginia. We look forward to working with the Virgin Hyperloop team to create a lasting partnership for years to come.”