On Monday, the officials in France stated that country aims to use ‘flying taxis’ to shuttle sports fans across Paris during the 2024 Olympic Games. They informed that Paris will soon start testing electric air taxis at a test site just outside of the city, reported Daily Mail. According to officials, the ultimate goal is to build at least two flight pathways to alleviate congestion during the Summer Olympics Games in 2024. Around 30 manufacturers are expected to test at the Pontoise test site, which is located near the Cormeilles-en-Vexin airfield.
“Our Pontoise airfield puts together a unique ecosystem around modern air mobility, and the trial platform which we are launching is unprecedented in entire Europe,” Augustin de Romanet, CEO of Aéroports de Paris, was quoted as saying by the outlet. He further stated that it will serve as a practical demonstration of the prospects of low-carbon and innovative aviation. The trial will also help in developing the low-altitude aviation market (below 300 metres), which has been mainly untapped until now, he added.
While the specifics of the flying taxis are still unknown, the trials at the Pontoise airstrip will involve several significant companies. Volocopter, Airbus, Vertical Aerospace and Ascendance, Lilium, and Joby Aviation are among the companies that will be involved in the trial. However, some more manufacturers are expected to be involved in the future. Catherine Guillouard, CEO of RATP Group, stated that the trials will help design an eVTOL flight at the scale of the vehicle to anticipate and validate vertiport installation plans in the Île-de-France region, as reported by Daily Mail.
France aims to have at least two pathways
It is pertinent to mention here that France is aiming to have at least two pathways open for fans during the 2024 Olympics. The first is between the Paris-Issy-les-Moulineaux heliport and the Saint-Cyr airfield, while the second is on a yet-to-be-determined site between Paris-Charles de Gaulle and Le Bourget airports and Paris city. Meanwhile, Hyundai recently announced intentions to construct autonomous flying taxis with seats for up to five people by 2028. To do this, the Seoul-based firm stated that its Urban Air Mobility Division has been renamed ‘Supernal.’