ATHENS – Greece won’t allow Uber, to protect the taxi monopoly, but plans to let Air Taxis that take off and land straight up like helicopters begin operating as soon as 2026, an idea that sounds right out of the 1960’s US TV series The Jetsons.
It will be done through the Florida-based Orama Ventures which formed a consortium to develop the required infrastructure for the entry and operation of eVTOL (Electric, Vertical Take Off and Landing) said Kathimerini.
EVTOLs are aircraft with electric propulsion systems, capable of vertical take-off and landing, without requiring the existence of a runway, can take up to six passengers at a time and cost about the same as a conventional taxi.
With zero emissions and almost no noise level, they will use vertical take-off and landing terminals, called Vertiports that can land on rooftops in cities or open spaces and elsewhere on the mainland and islands.
It wasn’t said how many there would be or how they would be regulated, operating in the air above densely-populated areas and which agency would have jurisidiction or if the taxi industry would try to stop it.
Consultations with various government agencies and potential partners are expected to continue throughout 2022 and Orama intends to proceed with the acquisition of the required properties and the licensing procedures for the construction of the first Vertiports in 2023, the paper said.
The company is the investment arm of O Lifestyle International that is based in Luxembourg. Greek construction firm Aktor has been selected as its first local partner, the report added.