Elon Musk seems to have ditched Red Dragon lander plan for Mars

The billionaire said that combining three Falcon 9 rockets together had multiplied vibrations throughout the vehicle making it difficult to test without a launch

With The Boring Company, which he launched earlier this year, Musk intends to dig tunnels that could provide alternative routes for vehicles, potentially alleviating traffic in metropolitan areas.

Elon Musk, serial entrepreneur and relentless social media hype-man, claims to have received "verbal approval" (whatever that is) from the government to build a huge tunnel from NY to Washington, DC that will provide ultra-fast transportation on the southern half of the northeast corridor.

Some city representatives, however, say no such talks have occurred.

Elon Musk wants to make it happen.

"Having some permanent presence on another heavenly body, which would be the kind of moon base, and then getting people to Mars and beyond - that's the continuance of the dream of Apollo that I think people are really looking for", Musk told NASA ISS program manager Kirk Shireman, who interviewed him onstage at the conference.

That leaves us with the million dollar question: Who gave Musk the green light?

A spokesman for The Boring Co. did not immediately respond to a request for details.

Either way, Musk's Boring Company will need more than a nod to build the high-speed transit system between two major cities.

At some point, papers will have to be filed, government agencies will likely hold public reviews and the long process of building one or more tunnels spanning more than 200 miles will begin.

Today, he says, he has received "verbal government approval" for his tunneling project, The Boring Company, to build a hyperloop connecting New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, D.C.

In a later response to an inquisitive follower, Musk did say the work on the New York-to-Washington tunnel would run in parallel to an existing project to build tunnels in Los Angeles.

Musk's Boring Company is named after equipment that will bore underground tunnels meant to alleviate above-ground traffic. Musk came up with the concept in 2013 but has left the job of commercializing it to others.

There's obviously a significant gap between Musk's vision and a full tunnel segment, but the latest tweets suggest it's a graspable start.

Apparently, local officials in charge of the cities involved were not looped into the conversation; New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's press secretary tweeted that "this is news to City Hall".

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