Former deputy lord mayor of Melbourne bids to ‘fast track’ commercial drones in Australia


The former deputy lord mayor of Melbourne is hoping to ‘fast track’ the use of commercial drones in Australia with the launch of a new business platform.

Clem Newton-Brown, who is also a former planning barrister and member of Parliament in Melbourne, is bidding to establish a network of ‘Skyportz’ throughout the city through his new start-up, and will work with property developers, the Victorian state government and apartment owners to edge closer to enabling the use of VTOL aircraft.

Uber Elevate is already considering Melbourne or Sydney for early trials of the flying vehicles being developed in 2023, and Newton-Brown believes the creation of Skyportz will help strengthen Melbourne’s case as a test city.

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In an interview with Australia Financial Times, he said that flying vehicles were well on their way to becoming a reality, but their rollout would be slowed down unless the necessary infrastructure is put in place.

He now plans to establish Skyportz in all capital cities in Australia.

Speaking to CDP, Newton-Brown says: “I’m planning on utilising legal, planning and political skills to fast track VTOLs and commercial drones in Australia (or at least have the infrastructure ready for when the tech and the regs catch up!).”

Tags : australiaMelbourneSkyportzUber Elevate
Zoe Monk

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