Urban-Air Port, the UK-based developer of ground infrastructure for air taxis and autonomous delivery drones, opens “Air-One”, a world-first demonstration of a fully-operational hub for electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) vehicles – such as air taxis – and autonomous cargo drones, heralding a new age of zero-emission, low-congestion urban transport.
Urban-Air Port – backed by the UK Government and supported by Supernal – will operate Air-One in the heart of Coventry for at least one month. Air-One will provide a blueprint for more than 200 vertiports planned worldwide by Urban-Air Port over the next five years to meet growing demand. The advanced air mobility (AAM) market is set to take off, with forecasted growth of 9 per cent annually to reach USD $1 trillion within the next two decades. Despite a booming market and a strong pipeline of eVTOLs entering commercial operations this decade, the lack of ground infrastructure remains one of the single
biggest barriers to growth, according to an analysis by NASA.
Air-One will demonstrate how purpose-built ground infrastructure can unleash the potential of AAM to decarbonise transport and cut air pollution and congestion, whilst providing seamless passenger journeys
The starting gun for a new age of transport
Ricky Sandhu, Founder and Executive Chairman of Urban-Air Port, said: “The opening of Air-One is a momentous moment – the starting gun for a new age of transport, an age of zero-emission, congestion-free
travel between and within cities that will make people healthier, happier and more connected than everbefore. Cars have roads. Trains have rails. Planes have airports. Now, eVTOLs have an Urban-Air Port.
“From design, through to fabrication and now into operation, Urban-Air Port has delivered Air-One in just 15 months, setting the standard for deployment globally and opening up a world of possibilities for rapid response air mobility. Air-One is just the first model in our infrastructure fleet and our order-book is not only open but already growing. The interest is turning into recognition of the need for our technology and into demand.”
The vanguard of clean transport
Minister for Aviation, Robert Courts, said: “British innovation has a rich history of transforming global transportation, from the creation of the railroads in the 1800s, to the growth of great British brands such as Jaguar, Triumph and Rover in the 1950s.
“The opening of Air-One, backed by Government funding, will revolutionise the way people and goods travel across the nation. This step forward puts Britain at the vanguard of clean transport, bringing investment and high-skilled, green job opportunities to the nation, while levelling up opportunity in the Midlands.” Urban-Air Port is accelerating its plans to develop 200 vertiports worldwide, and the company’s order book for additional sites is growing, with vertiports already planned in the UK in the West Midlands and London, and internationally in the United States (Los Angeles), Australia, South Korea, France, Germany, Scandinavia and South East Asia.
Mike Whitaker, Chief Commercial Officer of Supernal, said: “Air-One serves as a valuable, tangible asset to helping build stakeholder confidence and trust in emerging mobility technology and supporting systems. The Coventry demonstration is an important first step forward to reimagining how people across the world will move, connect and live. Developing a scalable system to support advanced air mobility operations requires collaboration from all industries and corners of the world. Supernal’s support of Urban-Air Port reinforces our belief in fusing technology and innovation to enable humanity and society to reach new levels of potential.”
Coventry was chosen for the site due to its location in the heart of the UK – with most parts of the country within four hours of travel – and its historic leadership in the automobile and aerospace industries. A series of public engagement events at Air-One will bring future air mobility to life for the public and form part of Coventry’s City of Culture celebrations.
Following the programme in Coventry in Summer 2022, Urban-Air Port will redeploy Air-One to other locations in the UK and internationally to undertake a variety of demonstrations in different environments and settings, establishing the global standard for ground infrastructure.