Agreement Will Bring Seamless Air Mobility Transport
Between New Jersey, New York City Area Airports, and Manhattan
- Blade will operate and revitalize the Newport Helistop, offering additional amenities and demonstrating the working relationships required to grow urban air mobility infrastructure and connectivity in the New York metro area.
- Blade will begin a pilot program for charter service and develop plans for by-the-seat service between the Newport Helistop, local New York area commercial airports, and select Manhattan locations, providing convenient travel options for a growing community.
NEW YORK, May 22, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Blade Air Mobility, Inc. (Nasdaq: BLDE, “Blade” or the “Company”), a technology-powered global air mobility platform, today announced that it has entered into an agreement with Newport Helipad LLC (“Newport”) to operate and revitalize the Newport Helistop (91NJ) ( “Helistop”), located in Newport, Jersey City, New Jersey, one of the largest and most successful mixed-use communities on the Hudson River waterfront, subject to the execution of definitive documentation. As part of the agreement, Blade will manage and operate the Helistop on behalf of Newport for both Blade flights and third-party operations. The Helistop is located on the Hudson River waterfront, approximately 3,800 feet from Manhattan.
“All large communities will need an urban air mobility strategy to bolster their attractiveness to corporations and residents alike in an increasingly competitive market,” said Nate Alexander, Blade's Senior Director, Rotorcraft Operations. “We are pleased that Newport had the foresight to relight this Helistop and partner with Blade to ensure safe and reliable vertical transportation for all tenants and residents in the community.”
This arrangement will create an additional amenity for the businesses and residents of Newport and beyond, as well as Blade’s client base. It will demonstrate the proper processes and working relationships required to safely grow urban air mobility in the greater New York City metropolitan area using conventional aircraft today, while preparing for the deployment of Electric Vertical Aircraft (“EVA”) in the near future.
Under the agreement, Blade will begin a pilot program for charter flights and explore the viability of the first ever scheduled, by-the-seat service between the Helistop and local New York City area airports and heliports, providing a convenient travel option for commuters, particularly for Newport tenants and employees of major banks and corporations that maintain large office presences around the Helistop. A flight from the Helistop to JFK Airport will take approximately 5 minutes versus up to 2 ½ hours by car.
In an effort to mitigate any potential noise impact on the neighboring communities, only helicopter flights for public transportation or emergency services will be permitted at the Helistop. Tourist flights, as well as helicopter operators who violate the New York City Economic Development Corporation’s designated noise abatement routing for tourist flights along the New Jersey and New York City Hudson River corridor, will not be allowed to utilize the Helistop.
The agreement will also provide Blade with the opportunity to construct an exclusive-use, Blade-branded terminal at the Helistop to facilitate safe and efficient operations for Blade flights and provide lounge amenities for Blade fliers.
The Helistop will provide urban air mobility connectivity to Newport, a vibrant live-work-play community with over 7,000 residences, including the award-winning and record-breaking Ellipse, which was honored with the Urban Land Institute’s Northern New Jersey Excellence Award for its thoughtful design and contribution to the community. The neighborhood’s eight state-of-the-art office towers provide more than five million square feet of office space to major employers including JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Fidelity Investments, L’Oreal, Forbes, and Tory Burch, and more than 25,000 employees.
In addition to its easy access to Manhattan, Newport is sought after for its lifestyle amenities, including the sports and wellness offerings at Newport Swim & Fitness, shopping at Newport Centre Mall and The Newport River Market, Newport Green - a 4.25-acre landscaped park with the only urban beach on the Hudson River, Westin and Courtyard by Marriott hotels, Newport Skates outdoor skating rink, and two onsite schools.
About Blade Air Mobility
Blade is a technology-powered, global air mobility platform committed to reducing travel friction by providing cost-effective air transportation alternatives to some of the most congested ground routes in the U.S. and abroad. Today, the Company predominantly uses helicopters and amphibious aircraft for its passenger routes and is also one of the largest air medical transporters of human organs for transplant in the world. Its asset-light model, coupled with its exclusive passenger terminal infrastructure, is designed to facilitate a seamless transition to EVA, enabling lower cost air mobility to the public that is both quiet and emission-free.
For more information, visit www.blade.com.
This press release contains “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the “safe harbor” provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Forward-looking statements include all statements that are not historical facts and may be identified by the use of words such as "will", “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “continue,” “expect,” “estimate,” “may,” “plan,” “outlook,” “future” and “project” and other similar expressions and the negatives of those terms. These statements, which involve risks and uncertainties, relate to analyses and other information that are based on forecasts of future results and estimates of amounts not yet determinable and may also relate to Blade’s future prospects, developments and business strategies. In particular, such forward-looking statements include statements concerning Blade’s future financial and operating performance, results of operations, business and capital deployment strategies and plans, customer behavior, competitive position, industry environment and growth opportunities, and the development and adoption of EVA technology. These statements are based on management’s current expectations and beliefs, as well as a number of assumptions concerning future events. Actual results may differ materially from the results predicted, and reported results should not be considered as an indication of future performance.
Such forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties, assumptions and other important factors, many of which are outside Blade’s control, that could cause actual results to differ materially from the results discussed in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in forward-looking statements include: our continued incurrence of significant losses; the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its related effects, failure of the markets for our offerings to grow as expected, or at all; our ability to effectively market and sell air transportation as a substitute for conventional methods of transportation; the inability or unavailability to use or take advantage of the shift, or lack thereof, to EVA technology; our ability to successfully enter new markets and launch new routes and services; any adverse publicity stemming from accidents involving small aircraft, helicopters or charter flights and, in particular, any accidents involving our third-party operators; the effects of competition; harm to our reputation and brand; our ability to provide high-quality customer support; our ability to maintain a high daily aircraft usage rate; changes in consumer preferences, discretionary spending and other economic conditions; impact of natural disasters, outbreaks and pandemics, economic, social, weather, growth constraints, and regulatory conditions or other circumstances on metropolitan areas and airports where we have geographic concentration; the effects of climate change, including potential increased impacts of severe weather and regulatory activity; the availability of aircraft fuel; our ability to address system failures, defects, errors, or vulnerabilities in our website, applications, backend systems or other technology systems or those of third-party technology providers; interruptions or security breaches of our information technology systems; our placements within mobile applications; our ability to protect our intellectual property rights; our use of open source software; our ability to expand and maintain our infrastructure network; our ability to access additional funding; the increase of costs and risks associated with international expansion; our ability to identify, complete and successfully integrate future acquisitions; our ability to manage our growth; increases in insurance costs or reductions in insurance coverage; the loss of key members of our management team; our ability to maintain our company culture; our reliance on contractual relationships with certain transplant centers and Organ Procurement Organizations; effects of fluctuating financial results; our reliance on third-party operators; the availability of third-party operators; disruptions to third party operators; increases in insurance costs or reductions in insurance coverage for our third-party aircraft operators; the possibility that our third-party aircraft operators may illegally, improperly or otherwise inappropriately operate our branded aircraft; our reliance on third-party web service providers; changes in our regulatory environment; regulatory obstacles in local governments; the expansion of domestic and foreign privacy and security laws; the expansion of environmental regulations; our ability to remediate any material weaknesses or maintain internal controls over financial reporting; our ability to maintain effective internal controls and disclosure controls; changes in the fair value of our warrants; and other factors beyond our control. Additional factors can be found in our most recent Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q, each as filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. New risks and uncertainties arise from time to time, and it is impossible for us to predict these events or how they may affect us. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance upon any forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date made, and Blade undertakes no obligation to update or revise the forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, changes in expectations, future events or otherwise.
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