Melbourne is a step closer to becoming one of the first cities in the world to test-run Uber aircraft.
Uber executives are in Australia to talk with the government about how to launch their new flying ride share system.
Melbourne’s growing population is said to have worked in favour for the city as the ride share company looks to add a third trial city alongside Dallas and Los Angeles.
“In both Sydney and in Melbourne the population is large and growing very rapidly,” Uber’s Head of Aviation Eric Allison said.
“We see that there is a clear need for this type of service.”
Uber executives have arrived in Melbourne to see how the city would cope with an in the air ride share experience.
“Australia is pretty impressive to us, Australia has been pretty progressive and forward looking on the ride sharing front,” Allison said.
To use the new technology, a customer can access a flight via an Uber vehicle.
Passengers will then be guided to one of multiple launch pads on top of buildings across the city.
“The button press will orchestrate you a car to get to the sky port and then to take you away from the sky port to get you to your final destination,” Allison explained.
The average trip from the city to Melbourne Airport is 55 minutes. Uber says it can cut that down to just five minutes – all at the cost of an Uber X.
“That will be pretty transformational to be able to take a flight for the same price as you would to take a car right now,” Allison said.
If Melbourne is chosen, test flights will begin in 2020 with services commencing in 2023.