Feasibility of UAM Vertiport Land Use and Location Planning

The future of Urban Air Mobility (UAM) highlights tremendous economic opportunities and a major shift in the delivery of services and products globally. The future growth of UAM is due to the multiple benefits it provides including improving emergency and natural disaster response, facilitating commercial package delivery, and in the long-run, integration with existing transportation and commuter system (air taxies). While these may provide a tremendous opportunity, the feasibility of developing the required infrastructure has not been explored in Utah. The recently passed S.B. 122 (2022) mandates that Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) assess options, feasibility, and progress towards the implementation of advanced air mobility. Further, the investigation should identify potential assets and development plans for future implementation. Previous work by the principal investigator (PI) and team provides a foundation for these efforts. The PI’s previous UTRAC project (ending April 22) has resulted in a parcel suitability map for the WFRC. The map was generated from a complex series of geospatial data and rules to answer, theoretically, where vertiports for UAV delivery and UAM could be located. In response to Senate Bill 218 (2021), UDOT is currently contracting with WSP, which is tasked with providing a corridor assessment and plan for future UAV/UAM flights. WSP will be using the suitability map to help inform this plan. Additionally, Utah businesses, such as Flight Level Engineering, LLC, are striving to develop national leadership in UAM infrastructure development. However, these combined efforts have been developed in isolation and engagement with communities has been extremely limited. This makes the assessment of feasibility extremely difficult; it is imperative that community partners and government agencies understand how planning, regulation, and infrastructure are needed to be woven together to evaluate the efficacy and feasibility of site implementation. Engagement with communities and testing to assess the feasibility can provide an essential step in meeting SB 122 and support planning efforts for communities across Utah.


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    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $49969
    • Contract Numbers:

      UDOT 238246

    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Utah Department of Transportation

      4501 South 2700 West
      Project Development
      Salt Lake City, UT  United States  84114-8380
    • Managing Organizations:

      Utah Department of Transportation

      4501 South 2700 West
      Project Development
      Salt Lake City, UT  United States  84114-8380
    • Project Managers:

      Chamberlin, Robert

    • Principal Investigators:

      Chamberlain, Brent

    • Start Date: 20220902
    • Expected Completion Date: 20241231
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01898277
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Utah Department of Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: UDOT 238246
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Nov 6 2023 5:13PM