People of my generation probably remember the animated TV show “The Jetsons,” a whimsical look at the future that initially ran in prime time from September 23, 1962 to March 17, 1963 on ABC, then later aired in syndicated reruns, with new episodes produced from 1985 to 1987.
Among the show’s many futuristic elements were flying cars; George Jetson’s vehicle conveniently collapsed into a compact briefcase. While that idea is totally unrealistic (even a folded-up model would be too heavy to carry), a Jetson future is one step closer to reality with the debut of Urban-Air Port’s Air-One as the world’s first flying-taxi hub. Opening in late April in Coventry, England, the station is designed as a pioneering site for more than 200 electric vertical takeoff and landing ports that are planned around the world.
Built in only eleven weeks, Air-One is designed as a 17,000-square-foot circle that’s divided into zones. Different zones house a cargo and logistics hub, vehicle hangar, security screening area and command-and-control center, plus passenger amenities like a lounge, café, and retail sites.
But as you might expect, Air-One is currently more of a feasibility demonstration than a working vertiport. The hope is someday there will be a global network of these hubs that could be built on land, water, or even atop a skyscraper. Then we’ll be one step closer to a Jetsons future.
For more information, read “See Inside the World’s First Airport for Flying Cars” by Dan Avery at https://www.architecturaldigest.com/story/see-inside-worlds-first-airport-flying-cars?.