Electric air taxis are on the way to the public and the FAA is making guidelines for vertiports.
- As flying taxis get closer to becoming a reality, businesses are working to provide a place for them to take off, land, and recharge and they’re calling it the vertiport.
- These transportation hubs could become critical parts of urban or regional mobility ecosystems, linking fast and convenient air travel to other forms of transit, like airports, buses, trains and ride-hailing networks, according to Axios.
- The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is releasing guidelines to ensure these vertiports are safe.
Why it’s important
The future is here and it’s full of electric, flying taxis.
Electric air taxis are on the way to being accessible by everyone, but in order to do that the FAA is releasing guidelines for the Vertiports to ensure they are safe, well-lit, well-marked, and that they can support the necessary charging infrastructure.
While the FAA has yet to certify these low-altitude aircraft for flight, the agency’s vertiport design guidelines will help airport owners, operators and infrastructure developers begin development now so they’re built when the aircraft are ready to launch, according to Axios.
“Our country is stepping into a new era of aviation. These vertiport design standards provide the foundation needed to begin safely building infrastructure in this new era,” said FAA associate administrator of airports, Shannetta Griffin.
Some of the guidelines state that the vertiports should be 100 by 100 feet with a 48-by-48-foot landing pad in the middle, marked by a dedicated crosshairs symbol identifying it as a vertiport. It also states the airspace required for approach and departure, stipulating that a vertiport must be 500 feet to 700 feet away from existing commercial runways.
Backing up a bit
United Airlines recently took a big step toward an innovation in flying by investing in flying taxis.
Earlier this month, United Airlines announced a $15-million investment in Eve Air Mobility, a company that produces electric vertical take-off and landing aircrafts (eVTOL).
United also signed a conditional purchase agreement for 200 four-seat eVTOLs plus 200 options with first deliveries expected as early as 2026, according to the Eve news release.