Global aerospace and technology company Vertical Aerospace has joined forces with Spanish construction firm Ferrovial to make air taxis a reality, with plans to launch 25 vertiports across the UK.
The two parties will work together to identify sites and design a network for vertiports across the nation to support the takeoff, landing and recharging of electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft.
Vertical’s piloted four-passenger aircraft called VA-X4 is expected to operate from these sites for the planned launch of its UK services with Virgin Atlantic.
Vertical founder and CEO Stephen Fitzpatrick said: “Our partnership with Ferrovial is an important step forward in bringing the VA-X4 to the skies.
“Creating the right infrastructure for zero-emissions aviation is a critical part of making Urban Air Mobility a reality. I look forward to flying between Ferrovial’s vertiports in the VA-X4 in just a few years’ time.”
The agreement will see Ferrovial offering its design expertise, operational capabilities as well as investment strength for developing the vertiports.
Ferrovial Vertiports CEO Kevin Cox said: “The partnership between vertiports and eVTOLs will provide high speed, affordable, emissions-free travel to millions of people. This network will boost local economies with a new model of regional connectivity.”
Through inter-city electric aviation in the country, the VA-X4 expects to reduce travel times and create new links across the UK.
Vertical’s VA-X4 aircraft is claimed to fly at a maximum speed of 200mph.
For its VA-X4, Vertical aims to achieve global safety certification standards that align with CAA and EASA expected regulations. It expects that its VA-X4 will be certified by 2024.
Earlier this week, Vertical Aerospace reached a partnership to work on operating its VA-X4 electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) vehicle from Heathrow Airport (LHR) in the UK by mid-decade.