Flying taxis cleared for takeoff in Paris for 2024 Olympics

  • The Paris Olympic games are fast approaching
  • Flying taxis are set to be a feature of the experience
  • However, Paris City Council reportedly isn’t too happy about it

Published on Jul 11, 2024 at 5:21 PM (UTC+4)
by Ben Thompson

Last updated on Jul 11, 2024 at 8:59 PM (UTC+4)
Edited by Tom Wood

Athletes won’t be the only ones leaping into action this summer at the Paris Olympics – because flying taxis have been cleared for takeoff.

The Journal officiel de la République française, France’s journal of record, have published an ordinance regarding the authorization of flying taxis.

The project has been spearheaded by the Aéroports de Paris Group.

READ MORE: POV of using a driverless taxi is so hard to comprehend

Seeing Paris by air – the flying taxi revolution

Aéroports de Paris Group also operate the heliport located next to the Seine River.

The pad, the Vertiport de Paris-Austerlitz, was established for public air traffic, but reserved for use of VTOLs (vertical take-off and landing).

However, only the German aircraft manufacturer Volocopter is authorised to operate their flying taxis during the Olympics.

The ordinance stated: “Only the use of the heliport by VTOLs of the Volocity type from the manufacturer Volocopter is authorized.”

The heliport will be authorized to operate until December 31st 2024 at the latest.

The backlash against flying taxis brewing in Paris

According to news reports, Paris City Hall has vowed to take legal action against Volocity.

They feel that the 18-rotor helicopters will create excessive noise pollution, increase energy consumption and generate greenhouse emissions.

The Volocopter is still seeking certification from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency.

Patrice Vergriete, the Minister Delegate for Transport of France, has said the government will monitor the test flights and and do a cost-benefit analysis.

The Volocopter is currently undergoing tests at Pontoise Airfield.

If launched, the goal would be to taxi one or two taxis between Roissy-Charles de Gaulle, Le Bourget and Paris within minutes.

Volocity can only carry out flights between 8am and 5pm, with only two flights a hour.

However, during the duration of the ordinance, they can carry out 900 flights.

Countries around the world are racing to make flying taxis a reality, with the US, China and the UAE among those competing to be first.

In a way, it sounds like it’s own Olympic sport.

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Ben Thompson

Ben got his start in journalism at Kennedy News and Media, writing stories for national newspapers, websites and magazines. Now working as a freelancer, he divides his time between teaching at News Associates and writing for news sites on all subjects.