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Elon Musk’s grand tunneling plans are no match for local government bureaucracy

elon musk tunnel

Elon Musk’s super ambitious — and incredibly obnoxious — plan to dig a tunnel between his home and his office isn’t likely to get off the drawing board. Musk’s regular rants about traffic and pledge that he’s going to “just start digging” to help him skirt the daily grind on the 405 was taken unusually seriously by a handful of tech publications, but it appears that there’s more standing in the billionaire’s way than just dirt and rocks. LA Weekly has poked some serious holes in Musk’s idea, and obtained some emails that show just how big of a hassle a tunnel project can be.

For starters, Musk’s repeated claims that he’ll be building a tunnel from his home to SpaceX are basically bunk. LA Weekly discovered that the CEO hasn’t even begun the process of getting permits or any kind of approval for such a project. That’s not entirely shocking, as it was easy to interpret Musk’s ranks as tongue-in-cheek.

However, photos surfaced of a hole being dug on SpaceX property, leading several news outlets to report that the project was indeed very real. There’s an answer for that, too. It seems the construction happening at SpaceX isn’t for Musk, but for a pedestrian walkway between its office and a nearby parking lot.

Even that project, which is incredibly modest when compared to the dig Musk has teased in the past, is running into a major snag with city and state officials. SpaceX still needs the state’s permission as well as clearance from OSHA to get the short tunnel on track, and then wait for thirty days while the neighborhood decides if it’s a good idea.

Mike Wehner has reported on technology and video games for the past decade, covering breaking news and trends in VR, wearables, smartphones, and future tech.

Most recently, Mike served as Tech Editor at The Daily Dot, and has been featured in USA Today,, and countless other web and print outlets. His love of reporting is second only to his gaming addiction.

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