I know, I know — we’re not supposed to call them drones, but UAS (Unmanned Aerial Systems) – but well, I’m liking ‘drone’ better for today.
City Council approved a 20-year lease agreement with Aerodrome for 5 acres of land (at $30,000/year) to develop a facility that will include a terminal building with classroom space, an indoor flight area, a maintenance facility, other training facilities, FBO space and a flight observation deck.
The land identified as best for the world’s first commercial UAS airport was the land previously used as a motorcycle/ATV recreational track within the Eldorado Valley (see map above).
Next steps are for a master-plan proposal (man, that’s coming up a lot these days) within the next 4 months and then the airport must be built within a year after that.
If you’d like to watch the video from the council meeting for more info – you can do that by CLICKING HERE and skipping ahead to 34 minutes and 35 seconds…
UPDATE on 10/29: Just to clarify with a little more scoop about what the end plans are (but are still in the works) — this was just the initial land lease agreement piece, but more is to follow to complete the bigger picture. Aerodrome will have to pay to build the facility out and then the city will own the constructed droneport and Aerodrome will be the operator contracted to run it. They are currently working on the agreement to jointly manage and bear the operational cost/liability of the droneport (once it’s up and running) and the city will receive a portion of revenue earned by Aerodrome from their operation of it.