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Company developing air taxi operation


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    DALLAS (KTVT) — A company that recently relocated from New Jersey to Dallas is developing an air taxi operation with plans to get off the ground in six years.

The aircraft, being developed by Jaunt Air Mobility, takes off and lands vertically like a helicopter and flies like an airplane.

Martin Peryea, Jaunt’s CEO said, “You can think of it as a helicopter with big wings on it.”

The aircraft is all electric, powered by a battery.

Jaunt COO Jesse Crispino said, “We’re at the cusp of the next revolution with electric flight.”

The company plans to start providing air taxi aircraft in 2027, saving commuters time especially during a busy morning or evening rush hour by flying instead of driving.

Peryea said, “You would make that flight in about a third of the time, about 20 minutes, compared to the hour, if you were driving. Cost is actually a little bit more than what you pay today for Uber XL, but less than Uber Black. So it’s actually going to be very cost effective.”

Jaunt isn’t the only company developing this kind of service.

Back in 2018, Uber Elevate announced plans to launch its air taxi service in the DFW area, taking people from Frisco Station to DFW Airport and have other locations, as well.

Earlier this month, Uber announced it sold Uber Elevate to one of Jaunt’s competitors.

An Uber spokeswoman says it’s a non-exclusive deal, so if another firm such as Jaunt certifies its aircraft and wants to book customers using the company’s app, they could.

Peryea said, “It would be extremely convenient to operate aircraft here in the Dallas region, like Uber had planned with operations.”

Jaunt is setting up its headquarters in an office tower along McKinney Avenue in Uptown.

It’s teaming up with major aerospace companies such as Triumph Aerospace Structures.

It builds aircraft in a plant in Red Oak in South Dallas County.

Jaunt’s executives said they’re considering building their aircraft there.

Because they’re using a lot of technology already proven, their goal is to have it certified by the FAA in 2026.

Crispino said, “We’re going to use traditional glass cockpits that are currently in use today, in modern helicopters, we’re going to have traditional rotorcraft flight controls, we’re going to use the same most advanced fly by wire technology that exists today in aviation.”

Jaunt says studies show there’s a lot of demand for this service, and that its goal is to build 2,500 aircraft each year.

Peryea said, “When we’re at full rate production, it will employ about 1,000 people to keep the production line running. In total, the company will eventually grow to about 2,000 people. There’s a lot of skilled craftsmen that have a lot of experience on building aircraft, and so we’d like to obviously utilize that skill set here in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.”

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