The Boring Company Announces Plans For Recycled Tunnel Material

The Boring Company will soon be re-selling the rocks excavated as part of its massive tunneling projects. Founder Elon Musk described the bricks as “Lifesize LEGO-like interlocking bricks made from tunneling rock that you can use to create sculptures & buildings.” The bricks made from the materials would be shipped worldwide.

The bricks are intended for construction and will be designed to be interlocking with a precise surface finish. Musk estimates that two people could build the outer walls of a small house in a day using the bricks. On Twitter, he said that the first set of the bricks would be ancient-Egypt themed.

Musk’s Tweet thread incited debate among his followers. Twitter user Kaleb Peters wrote: “After the flamethrowers, I treat all his tweets as if they’re real.” The tweet refers to the $500 flamethrowers the Boring Company sold 20,000 of earlier this year. The fire guns and their complementary fire extinguisher sold out within a week. Musk said earlier this week that flamethrower deliveries would probably kick off in May.

The Boring Company was launched in 2016 with a mandate to improve on current tunneling methods. Its missions including finding ways for boring machines to burrow through the Earth faster and to cut the costs by a factor of more than 10. The company aims to build an underground network of tunnels in Washington, DC and Los Angeles. It first broke ground on a test site in LA in late 2017.

The Boring Company believes it can turn material pulled from the Earth into bricks to support the tunnel behind the machine while simultaneously digging. This would dramatically reduce the amount of time it takes to build each tunnel. Musk says the underground tunnels would serve as transportation corridors that alleviate traffic.

The Boring Company’s website doesn’t yet specifically talk about or describe the bricks. It does says the company is “investigating technologies that will recycle the earth into useful bricks to be used to build structures.”

Other startups have developed similar systems. Indian architect Anupama Kundoo has developed inexpensive earthquake-resistant plaster bricks for construction use. French architecture firm Multipod Studio now sells a customizable home made from stackable blocks.