Hyundai and Urban-Air Port plan flying taxi-hubs across 65 cities worldwide
Hyundai Motor and Urban-Air Port are planning to establish a network of flying-taxi hubs for 65 cities worldwide as the former is on the path of developing a vertical take-off and landing craft. The companies said that they have decided to create bases in the UK, France, Germany, Scandinavia, Australia, South Korea and Southeast Asia. The first site in Coventry, England will open in early 2022.
Urban-Air Port will build networks for operating flying taxis and cargo drones. It has spent an amount of $150 million on physical infrastructure this year, compared to the $5 billion invested in eVTOLs themselves by startups such as Joby Aviation and Lilium GmbH, Bloomberg reported.
Urban-Air Port founder and executive chairman Ricky Sandhu conveyed that the future will have electric flying vehicles and drones in the cities. “The sector is soaring and we know that a future with electric flying vehicles and drones in cities is going to be a reality soon, but it can’t happen if we don’t have the infrastructure on the ground and in the air," he was quoted in the report.
A spokesman for the UK-based company said that after the opening of the Coventry site, the next one will be in another city in England’s midlands followed by one in Los Angeles. He also said that the London hub will be situated somewhere in the West End retail district or City financial centre. The Coventry base will be known as Air-One and it will see drones from Malloy Aeronautics and SkyFarer ply routes to demonstrate the viability of carrying cargoes such as refrigerated medical supplies.
Urban-Air Port plans to establish a network of more than 200 electric air mobility facilities worldwide in the next five years. These hubs will be modular and will be designed to fit into both dense urban areas and remote locations where charging will be provided using hydrogen fuel cells.
(With inputs from Bloomberg)