CHICAGO & SANTA CLARA, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Archer Aviation Inc. (NYSE: ACHR) and United Airlines (NASDAQ: UAL) today announced plans to launch the first air taxi route in Chicago, between O’Hare International Airport (ORD) and Vertiport Chicago. Vertiport Chicago, North America’s largest vertical aircraft takeoff and landing facility, is located in the Illinois Medical District near the Chicago Loop. This site was selected as the takeoff and landing site for this airport to city center route because of its unparalleled convenience, access and service. From there, passengers will be able to travel to and from ORD via Archer’s Midnight aircraft in approximately 10 minutes. A similar trip by car can take upwards of an hour or more during rush hour traffic.
United and Archer’s goal for its UAM network is to provide residents and visitors in the Chicago Metropolitan Area with a safe, sustainable, low noise, and cost-competitive alternative to ground transportation beginning in 2025. Chicago is the third most populous city in the United States, a center for business, innovation and investment, and home to United’s headquarters. This makes it a unique city for Archer and United to build out. The early launch routes will focus in on airport to city center transportation service, which are referred to as “trunk” routes. Once the trunk routes have been established, the next step will be to build out “branch” routes to connect to surrounding communities.
"Both Archer and United are committed to decarbonizing air travel and leveraging innovative technologies to deliver on the promise of the electrification of the aviation industry,” said Michael Leskinen, President of United Airlines Ventures. “Once operational, we’re excited to offer our customers a more sustainable, convenient and cost-effective mode of transportation during their commutes to the airport.”
"Technological innovation thrives here in Chicago, and this venture between Archer and United is yet another example of this strength," said Chicago Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot. "This exciting new technology will further decarbonize our means of transportation, taking us another step forward in our fight against climate change. I'm pleased that Chicago residents will be among the first in the nation to experience this innovative, convenient form of travel."
“Here in Illinois, we are taking bold steps to lead the clean revolution—paving the way for a more sustainable future for our state, our nation, and our world,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “I can’t think of a better team than Archer and United to partner with as we work to ensure our existing aviation infrastructure can support this new and exciting form of transportation. This partnership is just another way that we will achieve our goal of transitioning to 100% clean energy by 2050—all while saving Illinoisans money and creating thousands of good paying jobs in the process.”
"We’re thrilled to add Chicago to our growing list of initial launch cities as we continue to solidify our UAM network plans,” said Adam Goldstein, Archer’s Founder and CEO. “We’re looking forward to working with state and city leaders to bring an innovative transportation solution to the City of Chicago and its surrounding communities.”
"Vertiport Chicago is delighted to participate alongside United Airlines and Archer in revolutionizing intra-city travel in Chicago,” said Daniel Mojica, the Executive Director of Vertiport Chicago. “This partnership will inspire other cities to plan for cutting-edge transportation solutions."
ComEd, the Midwest’s largest utility company, will work with United and Archer to establish the power infrastructure necessary to support eVTOL aircraft operations in and around the Chicago Metropolitan Area.
*Image above depicts simulated flight
Archer is designing and developing electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft for use in urban air mobility networks. Archer’s mission is to unlock the skies, freeing everyone to reimagine how they move and spend time. Archer's team is based in Santa Clara, CA. To learn more, visit www.archer.com.
United's shared purpose is "Connecting People. Uniting the World." From our U.S. hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, Newark/New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., United operates the most comprehensive global route network among North American carriers. United is bringing back our customers' favorite destinations and adding new ones on its way to becoming the world's best airline. For more about how to join the United team, please visit www.united.com/careers and more information about the company is at www.united.com. United Airlines Holdings, Inc., the parent company of United Airlines, Inc., is traded on the Nasdaq under the symbol "UAL".
Forward Looking Statements
This press release contains forward looking statements regarding Archer’s future business plans and product roadmaps, including statements regarding the development, commercialization, and timelines of its aircraft certification and UAM network buildout. These forward looking statements are only predictions and may differ materially from actual results due to a variety of factors. The risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ from the results predicted are more fully detailed under the caption "Risk Factors" in Archer’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2021 and our Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the three months ended March 31, 2022, and other documents filed by Archer from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), available on the SEC website at www.sec.gov. In addition, please note that any forward looking statements contained herein are based on assumptions that Archer believes to be reasonable as of the date of this press release. Archer undertakes no obligation to update these statements as a result of new information or future events.