SAN FRANCISCO (KPIX 5) — Hailing a Jetson-like flying car to avoid rush-hour traffic will be a thing of the near future if Uber’s dream becomes a reality.
In a nearly 100-page white paper, the company laid out a plan for an air-taxi network dubbed, “Uber Elevate.”READ MORE: UPDATE: Cal Fire Crews Battling Fremont Fire in Sonoma County
The ride-sharing company hopes to have the program up and running with affordable, electric flying cars within the next 10 years.
“It’s probably realistic in the sense that you can build a thing that will fly,” says Russell Handcock, President and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley. “We know how to make flying automobiles, we know how to make flying craft, what’s difficult is the regulatory environment.”
Uber isn’t the only company getting into the flying car game.
This past week – a prototype of a flying car reportedly made by startup Zee.Aero was spotted at Hollister Airport. The startup is backed by Google co-founder Larry Page.READ MORE: Woman Faces 15 Years In Prison For 2017 Fatal DUI In Livermore
And flying car concepts are already in the works from other aviation companies including Airbus.
Uber announced its latest plans days after successfully completing what it claims to be the world’s first shipment of beer via a self-driving truck. Uber bought the startup Otto. The company delivered 50,000 cans of Budweiser across 120 miles of highway in Colorado without a driver in the front seat.
Uber doesn’t plan to build the cars, but wants to work with companies, governments and communities. The San Francisco-based company suggests designating garage roofs and helipads as landing spots.
Russell Hancock of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, a private public consortium, says it makes sense why the valley is investing in changing the way we get around.MORE NEWS: San Francisco Announces New Anti-Retail Theft Initiative
“One of the most pressing problems that we face now is transportation. Two reasons: one is that it’s so hard to get around that it’s driving all of us crazy, the second reason is because the planet is warming and we have got to figure out a way to get around without combustion.”