Work starts on building world's first ground-breaking Urban Air Port in Coventry - The Coventry Observer

18th Aug, 2022

Work starts on building world's first ground-breaking Urban Air Port in Coventry

CONSTRUCTION work has started on the world’s first Urban-Air Port in Coventry.

The project will see the city become a test-bed for ground-breaking technology which planned to revolutionise transport and decarbonise the environment.

Coventry City Council has partnered with British start-up Urban-Air Port Ltd, to showcase Air One, a rapidly deployable Urban-Air Port (a vertiport) designed to support Electrical Vertical Take-off and Landing (eVTOL) vehicles for passenger air taxis and drone deployment for logistics.

As the technology develops, the Urban-Air Port can support autonomous eVTOLs and drones (or unmanned aerial vehicles).

The Urban- Air Port can be constructed quickly so it can be deployed in places swiftly and the compact footprint being deployed in towns and cities can create a network of connectivity to support the movement of parcels from household deliveries to medical supplies.

Urban-Air Port identified the West Midlands as an ideal place to begin developing the network with Coventry at the centre, as the heart of technology, logistics and infrastructure.

Coun Jim O’Boyle, cabinet member for jobs, regeneration and climate change, said: “This is yet another way Coventry is leading the way when it comes to transport innovation.

“We are right at the front of the green industrial revolution and this is a brilliant world first.”

He added the authority was pleased to be working with the partners at Urban Airport to showcase the breakthrough system which in the near future could help to boost productivity in towns and cities as well as supporting climate change efforts by taking vehicles off the roads.

“Any company looking to really innovate in the transport revolution should look to work in Coventry – whether it’s Air One, a Gigafactory or Coventry Very Light Rail, Coventry is the best place, with the best skills to collaborate with.

“One of the best things about Air One is local schools will be able to visit, look around, and be inspired for what they can achieve.”

Ricky Sandhu, Founder and Executive Chariman at Urban-Air Port Ltd, said: “We are absolutely thrilled to get Urban-Air Port’s Air One on site – this marks a unique and transformative moment where the UK positions itself as the world’s leading player in advanced air mobility.”

He added the technology will enable Coventry and other cities around the country and the world to decarbonise.”

And he said he was grateful to the council and UK Government for adopting the vision and making advanced air mobility a viable and sustainable reality.

Urban Airport Ltd, working with Coventry University’s National Transport Design Centre (NTDC), will research the Air

One customer journey, making the Urban-Air Port accessible to all, easy to navigate and pleasurable to use.

The NTDC uses immersive virtual reality to allow people to experience and contribute to the design of the innovative transport system.

Prof Stewart Birrell, Professor of Human Factors for Future Transport at the NTDC, said it relished being able to use its research knowledge in user-centred design to help shape the forward-thinking development and the anticipation and excitement would grow as the site came to life in the coming weeks.

From April 28 to May 15, Air One will be open to the public, with tours provided by the Urban-Air Port team.

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