November 13, 2023
A heliport infrastructure for eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles in New York City was announced at a news conference at the Downtown Heliport in Manhattan today.
Electric air taxi company Joby Aviation also featured one of its vehicles including an exhibition flight over New York City during the press conference, including hovering in front of a media crowd.
Joby has a partnership with Delta Air Lines with New York as one of its early launch markets once approved by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
The Joby four-passenger electric aerial vehicle (EAV) is designed for rapid, back-to-back flights and can fly up to 100 miles on a single charge.
Traveling from Manhattan to JFK Airport can be done in seven minutes, JoeBen Bevirt, founder and CEO of Joby, said at the press event.
“By electrifying one of the most famous heliports in the world, New York is demonstrating global leadership in the adoption of electric air travel,” said Bevirt. “We’re grateful for the support of the city, and we’re honored to be working with visionary partners like Delta Air Lines to bring our air taxi service to this market.
“We plan to make quiet, emissions-free light an affordable, everyday reality for New Yorkers, while significantly reducing the impact of helicopter noise.”
New York Mayor Eric Adams also spoke at the event.
“Within your lifetime, many of you are going to own your own personal electric helicopter,” he said, “We’re going to establish the world’s first heliport with infrastructure for electric-powered helicopters of this nature, the first one in this country.”
Beta Technologies from Burlington, Vermont, plans to install a charging station at the New York heliport and its Charge Cube was displayed at the press conference.
Since 2017, Joby has flown more than 30,000 miles with its full-scale prototype EAV, according to the company.
Bevirt said Joby has been working on its electric flying vehicles for more than a decade.
Volocopter also flew its EAV in another demonstration at the New York heliport. The Volocopter recently provided a test flight at Tampa International Airport.
At the New York event, the Volocopter pilot flew the vehicle in front of the media crown and made a bow gesture before landing.
The Volocopter has been flying in different cities in the U.S.
The Joby commercial passenger service is planned for 2025.
After months of test flying its EAV remotely, Joby recently added pilots to the mix. Most of Joby’s EAVs had been piloted remotely from a ground control station.
Joby recently delivered the first eVTOL vehicle to the Air Force at the Edwards Air Force Base in California, believed to be the first eVTOL taxi delivered in the U.S. as part of a $131 million contract between the Department of Defense and Joby.
Joby recently selected Dayton, Ohio, as the location to build facilities to deliver up to 500 flying vehicles a year.
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