LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – There is a new partnership in the works between the Michigan Department of Transportation’s aeronautics commission and the government of Ontario – testing out a commercial drone skyway.
“No better opportunity than to partner with sort of a multi level transportation focus, but also to include that international border,” said Bryan Budds, Deputy Administrator of MDOT’s Office of Aeronautics.
According to MDOT, this partnership is forming the first-of-its-kind feasibility study using commercial drones.
They’re looking to see if this technology can be flown beyond the line of sight of a pilot and be used in operations like just-in-time delivery
“Your traditional package arrival at your house in your neighborhood, but also things that are more emergency in nature. So medical transportation and in some instances prescription delivery, in some instances there’s been use cases for even organ transport in some high traffic areas,” said Budds.
This effort will take place in skyways between Michigan and Ontario, southeast Michigan, and any other suitable locations in the state.
They will be looking at the environmental impacts and making sure no burdens are placed on people living in these areas.
Governor Gretchen Whitmer says, “The vital research could lead to faster product deliveries and reduced supply chain disruptions in the future, helping us grow Michigan’s economy and put Michiganders first.”
Our ultimate hope is that if we can tackle some of those initial hurdles that essential we will have some of these highways in the skies connecting communities from an areal perspective as well.”
They are hoping to have results from this study by late summer to early fall of this year.