The Swiss city of Geneva will take part in a European feasibility study on autonomous air taxis, the canton has announced.
Under the auspices of the European Commission, the Canton of Geneva has agreed to study and evaluate the desirability of using drones for passenger transport as part of its urban mobility and innovation.
The Urban Air Mobility project will be implemented as part of the European Urban Innovation Initiative on Intelligent Cities and Communities (EIP-SCC) initiative, which brings together cities and towns. regions, industries, SMEs, research institutes and other expert actors in the smart city.
Europe wants to stand out from initiatives around the world and give voice to its cities and regions on this issue that could emerge from here to 2030.
The collaboration between cities and countries, the sharing of knowledge and new practices will facilitate the adoption of identical standards, drivers of innovation in mobility.
With its ability to innovate, the canton of Geneva is the ideal candidate to represent Switzerland
While Swiss expertise in drones is recognized worldwide, Geneva confirms its leadership and innovation capability. With Helsinki, the canton is one of the few European regions to have adopted a clear vision and strategy for drones. Geneva anticipates the opportunities offered by this technological innovation in terms of mobility, environmental, energy and economic aspects for companies and the academic world.
With the support and support of the Federal Office of Civil Aviation and air navigation service provider Skyguide, this study will notably make it possible to assess the impact on the aforementioned areas and to measure more precisely the interest of the population in project as its technological, legal and financial feasibility.
“This project is a first step that materializes the drones vision of the Canton of Geneva published in November 2017. It also confirms the desire of the State Council to promote and develop innovation to boost the academic and economic fabrics of Geneva” says state advisor Pierre Maudet, in charge of the department of security and the economy.
“In a fast-growing region where traffic is becoming increasingly saturated, it is the responsibility of public authorities to explore new avenues to face the challenges of tomorrow,” said Luc Barthassat, State Councilor for Department of Environment, Transport and Agriculture. “Following a legislature marked by the development of car-sharing, the promotion of electromobility and reflections on cable transport, the examination of the potential of the transport of people by drones, by defining the constraints to test it, place Geneva in the way of the development of third-dimensional urban transport. ”
With its knowledge of the economic and technological fabric of Geneva, the Office for the Promotion of Industries and Technologies (OPI) will federate the skills needed to carry out this study. “The OPI confirms its ability to stimulate technological innovation and to facilitate synergies between companies in Geneva, Switzerland and Switzerland,” according to Frédéric Dreyer, Director.
As Laurent Horvath, member of the steering committee of the World Association of Smart Cities, OASC points out, “as with autonomous cars, it is important to offer an alternative to projects coming from the US or China and from take into account the opinion of all stakeholders in order to clearly identify the expectations and questions related to this new type of mobility “.
For Geneva, the result of this feasibility study will be evaluated by the Council of State during the first quarter of 2019. In case of approval, a first demonstrator could be realized at the end of 2020.