How Los Angeles is preparing for the air taxi takeoff

To help prepare Los Angeles for the new tech, a nonprofit organization spun out of LA Mayor Eric Garcetti’s office is working with air taxi developers and local residents to develop a policy toolkit in advance of commercial operations later this decade.

There’s a lot to be hammered out before then. Foremost, the aircraft must be certified with the Federal Aviation Administration — a mammoth task in and of itself. But even beyond aircraft certification, companies will also need to plan for infrastructure, namely vertiports, or where the air taxis will take off and land. And these come with real issues like noise pollution and zoning laws that have the potential to affect not only city residents but other transportation networks, too.

Urban Movement Labs was spun out of the mayor’s Office of Economic Development in 2020 to become a standalone 501c(3) nonprofit aimed at shaping the future of mobility in the city.