Partnership to bring air taxis to Houston Airports

June 20, 2024

Houston Airports recently entered a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Wisk Aero to bring advanced air mobility (AAM) to the city. The agreement expands on a recent public-private partnership (P3) with Sugar Land to develop vertiport infrastructure in the greater Houston area.

Under the MOU, Wisk and Houston Airports will partner to evaluate the requirements to support vertiport operations at George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH), William P. Hobby Airport (HOU) and Ellington Airport (EFD). Over the next year, the partners expect to develop infrastructure and routes, seek community input and continue conversations with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

“This public-private partnership marks a significant step forward for the City of Houston as we invest in innovative and sustainable modes of air transportation,” Houston Mayor John Whitmire said in a statement. “The collaboration underscores our commitment to pioneer advancements that will shape the future of urban mobility.”

Houston Airports will integrate AAM into its plans, engage with the community and set operational policies. Wisk will offer expertise on autonomous Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (EVTOL) aircraft operations, and together they will explore maintenance and training facilities in Houston.

The city would utilize Wisk’s Generation 6 Air Taxi, which takes off and lands vertically like a helicopter but transitions to forward flight like a plane. Fully electric and quieter than helicopters, they are fully autonomous and monitored by a human supervisor on the ground.

Houston Airports follows Dallas Fort Worth International Airport (DFW) and the city of Arlington, Texas. Both entered into agreements with Overair, the developer of an EVTOL that is on the path to Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) approval, earlier this year.

The rising innovations in EVTOL aircraft operations are contributing to the FAA’s Innovate28 initiative to safely integrate AAM in multiple locations by 2028.

Photo credit: Wisk Aero LLC

Gracie Warhurst

Gracie Warhurst has joined Strategic Partnerships, Inc. as a writer and digital content creator for the new Government Market News portal. With a rich background in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin, Warhurst has experience as editor-in-chief of a literary magazine, assistant web editor, and project manager for an AI journalism project. She also contributed as a reporter during the development of SPI's news portal. Warhurst graduated summa cum laude in December 2023 with a Bachelor's in Journalism and a certificate in creative writing, making her a valuable asset to the SPI team.

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