Air taxi infrastructure company Skyportz and property developer Pelligra announced today a partnership to explore jointly developing vertiport networks to attract air taxi and drone delivery services to Australia. Speaking at the Avalon Airshow, Skyportz CEO Clem Newton-Brown said this partnership was a significant step forward for this emerging industry in Australia.

“We have strong policy support from the Federal Government and our air regulator, CASA to develop Advanced Air Mobility in Australia. The front runner electric air taxis will be  certified to operate in the next couple of years. We now need the vertiport sites and if  Australia can establish a launch vertiport network we will be in a position to attract the first  of these clean, green, quiet aircraft to Australian skies”. 

The Agreement builds on a previous partnership between Skyportz and other property owners such as Secure Parking which has hundreds of parking sites at urban hubs.

Pelligra is a third generation family business with an extensive portfolio of over 1200 projects in Victoria, South Australia, New South Wales, Queensland and overseas. 

The next step in the partnership is to focus their resources on a region or city that actively wants to be a world leader in Advanced Air Mobility. Nowhere in the world has a vertiport network yet been established, but several European and American cities are well advanced in their planning. 

USA-based consultancy Nexa Capital has assessed the potential return on five use cases in cities such as Melbourne to be in excess of $5 billion in the first 20 years of operations, and the partnership between Skyportz and Pelligra aims to bridge that gap. 

“The key to this industry is breaking the nexus between aviation and existing airports. We need to develop a network of new vertiport sites if the industry is to reach its potential and Skyportz is readying the landscape to partner with infrastructure partners such as Pelligra”,  said Newton-Brown. 

Why it’s important: The partnership between Pelligra and Skyportz will afford each member more resources to continue exploration of development sites for vertiports in Australia and reflects an increasing focus of late on vertiport infrastructure. While aerial mobility aircraft remain a large portion of the focus for AAM developments, more and more attention is also being directed toward wide-scale development of vertiport and supporting infrastructure for AAM operations.

Posted by Naish Gaubatz