Brian O’Neill: A Pittsburgh history of hype for loops and levitation

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission will spend $2 million it doesn’t have to study a scheme to transport people and freight in pods going more than 500 miles per hour between Pittsburgh and Philadelphia…

Joe Grata began covering transportation for The Pittsburgh Press in the early 1970s. That makes him one of the few who ever rode Skybus, an automated, rubber-tire people-mover on an elevated track that never got past its two-month demonstration project in South Park. Skeptical public officials successfully sued to kill it.

Henry Posner III, chairman of Railroad Development Corp. in Green Tree and an adjunct professor at Carnegie Mellon University, owns or manages freight and passenger lines from Iowa to Peru to Germany. His view of hyperloop?

“I think it’s the next maglev — without the job-creation component specific to Pittsburgh,’’ Mr. Posner said