Advanced Air Mobility

Flying Drone Taxis – Transportation of the Future?

LBEP, in partnership with Wisk Aero, has taken a leadership position facilitating the discussion around Advanced Air Mobility and its potential role in the movement of goods and commuter travel throughout Los Angeles county and Southern California. Long Beach stands out as an ideal case study, perfectly located at the intersection of L.A. and Orange counties. The geographic proximity of Long Beach to multiple tourist and commuter destinations makes the city well situated to be a central hub of this technology. 

The Long Beach Economic Partnership (LBEP) partnered with Wisk Aero – revolutionary developer of the first self-flying, all-electric four-seat air taxi in the United States – to form the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) Working Group to engage businesses, local government, and community leaders to study the feasibility of bringing AAM to Southern California. The group now includes many key industry stakeholders, including Joby, Skyports, Overair, Supernal, AURA Network Systems, and Black & Veatch. 

The broad category of AAM and more specific Urban Air Mobility (UAM) have been proposed as an augmentation to the transportation network that can increase urban transportation choices while contributing to sustainability and economic development. Aerospace manufacturers are in various stages of developing piloted and autonomous electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (eVTOLs) for “air-taxi” services and are also planning for the eventual construction and operation of networks of vertiports in regions of the U.S. and elsewhere around the world.

The AAM Task Force evaluates the opportunity for AAM/UAM including potential vertiport sites, workforce development, community interest, the integration of autonomous aircraft into city transportation plans, and federal and state government funding opportunities, aligned with Federal Aviation Administration standards on use and safety. Over the course of the last year, the AAM Task Force has made significant progress, including the below accomplishments:

  • Hosted Australian Mayoral delegation introducing Mayor Richardson and Long Beach AAM
  • Commissioned an Economic Impact Analysis for the AAM industry by CSULB
  • Collaborated with Long Beach Airport on the Federal SMART grant
  • Celebrated the 100 Year Anniversary of the Long Beach Airport and the Festival of Flight with a Wisk autonomous aircraft on site
  • Promoted Long Beach and AAM at numerous events including 88 Cities Summit, City Age, Mobilize Summit and CoMotionLA Presentation to Southern California Association of Governors regarding Advanced Air Mobility
  • Presented to Southern California Association of Governors (SCAG) on the Long Beach AAM research and progress to date
  • Published and distributed the Advanced Air Mobility Economic Impact Analysis Report
  • *clicks through to the report 
  • Celebrating the 100 Year Anniversary of the Long Beach Airport (LGB), Wisk Aero held  an exhibition flight during the LGB Festival of Flight
  • 2024 – Wisk Aero representing AAM at HAI Heli Expo Anaheim

Business & Industry

Promotion & Attraction

Tech & Future Focus