As a quick effort at simple research, I looked at several local government websites searching for Air Taxi or Urban Air Mobility (UAM) or Advanced Air Mobility (AAM). The result was lots of blanks with one or two exceptions
There’s numerous articles about e-scooters and how they might be integrated into cityscapes.
Addressing local governments, much of what has been published to date concerns the use of drones. Yes, the use of drones is happening here and now, so this is not such a surprise. However, to me, this was a reminder that the frenetic world of aviation often discussed the future in rooms full of like-minded people. Embracing a wider audience is overdue.
In the case of UAM/AAM, innovations in civil aviation are move beyond airports, upper airspace, and specialist technical interest. If the electrification of flight is to take hold it will touch the lives of many more people than conventional commercial aviation.
These new aviation developments will generate new business models and offer new services. This is challenging stuff. It’s clear to me that, without the agreement of local authorities such enterprises will be dead before they start.
National governments may take a regulatory approach that imposes on local governments. That would be ill advised and ultimately unsustainable. A cooperative partnership would open a smooth transition from transport novelty to accepted everyday part of mobility.
Local authorities will need to adapt their formal local plans to include planning considerations of zoning, land-use, multi-modal matters, environmental impact, construction, utilities/support infrastructure, public privacy and much more.
Local government is a partner in risk management too. Just as highway authorities wrestle with improving road safety so, no doubt, UAM/AAM accidents and incidents will be on their agenda.
Fostering public-private partnerships is talked about but few examples have moved beyond theory and into practice.
POST 1: These issues have been highlighted at ICAO this year Urban Air Mobility and the Role of Air Transport – ICAO 2022 Innovation Fair – ICAO TV
POST 2: The organisation is looking at possible future operations https://varon.aero/
POST 3: People taking a holistic view http://www.supernal.aero