Road Logistics

UK Government backs world-first programme to build Air Architecture for air

·       Coalition of industry and government, led by Urban-Air Port®, to create safe, clean and connected air corridors and ground infrastructure for future flying taxis and drones.

·       UK pioneers, Urban-Air Port®, Altitude Angel and Safeguard Vertiports, to deliver the technologies to build the future Air Architecture™ across the UK.

·       UK Government championing the Urban-Air Port® programme to strengthen UK leadership in the growing urban air mobility sector.

·       Urban-Air Port® and the Air Architecture™ will employ and support sustainable green technology in the fight against climate change.

·       First of more than 200 Urban-Air Port® hubs worldwide launching in Coventry in 2021 will demonstrate operational air corridors and ground infrastructure.

·       Urban-Air Port® will connect urban centres and under-served communities across the world – from vast modern cities to small towns and even off-grid villages.

·       Urban-Air Port® will provide multi-modal transport hubs of the future using net zero emissions and connecting air, road and rail to help unify transport networks, cut congestion and pollution.

Industry leaders Urban-Air Port® have announced a partnership with Altitude Angel and Safeguard Vertiports to design safe, clean and connected Air Architecture for future electric air taxis and autonomous logistics drones.

These ‘air roads’ will enable people and cargo to travel by manned and unmanned electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. This world-first infrastructure programme, being demonstrated in Coventry later this year, is supported by the UK government as a significant step towards unlocking a future of clean urban air mobility for the UK and will provide a model for other countries to follow.

The Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng, Secretary of State for the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, said: “Cleaner, inter-city flight technology is vital not only to reducing emissions, but to better connecting remote communities, from small towns in the UK to isolated settlements all around the world. As we build back greener from the pandemic, initiatives like the government-backed Air-One® project will help us develop the infrastructure needed to make our dreams of flying taxis a reality.”

The Government is supporting the development of urban air mobility to provide improved zero-carbon transport connectivity across the UK and reap the benefits from exporting these technologies to support this rapidly advancing global sector.

The global VTOL and drone market is estimated to be up to $2.9trn (£2.17trn) by 2040, according to Morgan Stanley.[i] In the US, NASA predicts urban air mobility could be worth up to $500bn (£375bn) in the near-term.[ii] eVTOLs and drones could enable doctors or medicine to get to patients in record time, urgent deliveries to arrive quickly without causing congestion or pollution and travellers and packages to reach remote communities that don’t have reliable road or rail.

However, NASA estimates that more than 70% of the potential urban air mobility market value is dependent on infrastructure[iii] – this value is what Urban-Air Port® is working to unlock. The company develops scalable, zero emission infrastructure for high frequency air mobility. Its Air-One® project is a world-first hub for future air taxis, drones and ground-based electric transport, such as cars, e-bikes and e-scooters, which will open in central Coventry later this year.

The urban air mobility market is growing fast. The first eVTOLs are expected to be commercialised in the next three to five years.[iv] Hyundai, a key partner of Urban-Air Port®, is one of several companies developing an eVTOL passenger vehicle. Hyundai’s will be commercialised by 2028.[v] Joby Aviation, the US-based aerospace start-up, plans to launch a commercial air taxi service in 2024.<a…

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