Eldorado Droneport Design Revealed

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Thirteen months after announcing that a drone airport would be built in Boulder City, Aerodrome has unveiled its design plans for Eldorado Droneport.

Eldorado Droneport will be privately operated but open to the public, and offer training for unmanned aircraft systems, provide Federal Aviation Administration repairman and pilot certification and testing, and offer a variety of other educational, research and development services.

Jonathan Daniels, president and chief compliance officer of Aerodrome, said the design plan is much better than the design he originally “scribbled out.”

Right now the 50 acres slated for development located about 28 miles south of the Strip consist of dirt with one permanent and several temporary structures. The new renderings reveal plans for permanent structures, including a 15,000-square-foot terminal building as well as “build-to-suit” opportunities with additional structures totalling 860,000 square feet of research and development, warehousing, hangar, office, and training facilities.

“It’s going from the vision in your mind’s eye to the reality,” Daniels said. “Trying to actually execute it and deciding how to work through that, that’s where you find the little funny changes — kind of like baking.”

For example, in a normal airport there isn’t much of a need for electrical outlets at airplane landing ramps, he said.

“But at the Droneport you actually do. If you have a drone crew they can plug in their chargers, they can plug in their controllers, because they’re permanently there during the flight. It’s not just a parking spot,” he said.

Similar logistical surprises came with Wi-Fi and cellular coverage.

“You got to have communication out of the ports and ramps for the crews that are out there, and they may be out there for a couple of hours,” he said.

Aerodrome hired DLR Group to develop the design concepts for Eldorado Droneport.

“There is no road map for what this building should be; it is a first-of-a-kind facility. It has to be invented, and that is a daunting, and thrilling, challenge,” said DLR Group Architect Christopher Bell in a statement. “The building is designed as a geometric white cloud that hovers over the sand. It is futuristic and lightweight like the unmanned vehicles it supports. Also, it is made up of fabric that shields the interior from the harsh desert sun like traditional Bedouin tents. Basically, it responds to the needs of its occupants, it is not alien, but of this landscape.”

The droneport supports commercial and recreational drone operators.

Source: Las Vegas Review Journal

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