City of Romulus soars into the future with drone technology
Posted By: The Detroit News/Detroit Region Aerotropolis on December 18, 2023. For more information, please click here to read the source article.
The City of Romulus, Michigan is thrilled to announce a significant advancement in aviation technology with the expansion of drone-accessible airspace near the Detroit Metropolitan Airport (DTW). This development, made possible through changes implemented by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), marks a significant step forward for Romulus in embracing innovation, economic growth and community life.
While the FAA facilitated the necessary adjustments to the airspace, the City of Romulus – with funding from its Tax Increment Finance Authority (TIFA) and in partnership with drone integration leader Airspace Link – played a pivotal role in advocating for these changes. The combined efforts ensured these airspace enhancements aligned with the safety needs of the local community and the airport. This initiative propels Romulus businesses and its community to the forefront of the rapidly growing drone industry.
Romulus’s active participation in the Detroit Region Aerotropolis, a collaborative effort to transform the region into a manufacturing, logistics and aviation hub, was crucial in this process. The city’s involvement in Aerotropolis’ initiative to integrate drone technology into regional infrastructure significantly contributed to the success of these airspace changes.
Following extensive research and analysis conducted with Airspace Link, Romulus identified optimal areas for Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) operations. The FAA’s implementation of the proposed changes to the Low Altitude Authorization and Notification Capability (LAANC) grid ceilings near DTW has considerably improved airspace accessibility.
The new LAANC grid ceilings enable drone operators to receive immediate flight authorizations, enhancing community access to this airspace. This update has modified 22% of the flight grids from zero to a minimum of 50-foot ceilings, improving accessibility across 13.92 square miles of the city. This change affects over 32% of Romulus, primarily in commercial and residential areas, positively impacting more than 5,500 Romulus residents.
This expanded airspace access is expected to unlock a wealth of economic opportunities, enabling local businesses and individuals to explore various UAS technologies. The applications are diverse, encompassing everything from medical and package delivery to infrastructure inspection and public safety use cases. This change is anticipated to fuel economic expansion, stimulate job growth, forge new educational avenues in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), and is likely to bring improvements in public health and safety while introducing unique recreational activities, such as drone parks.
This initiative aligns with Michigan’s broader trends in advancing drone technology, as evidenced by projects like the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) UAS Connected Corridor Feasibility Analysis and the Advanced Aerial Innovation Region (AAIR) in Detroit. As Romulus steps into this new era of aerial technology, it reaffirms its position as a leader in fostering economic development and technological innovation.
About the City of Romulus
The City of Romulus serves over 23,000 residents and 700 businesses, with a daytime population of more than 51,500 due to large-scale operations of the Detroit Metropolitan Airport. Promoting the vision of “Home of Opportunity,” Romulus sits at the crossroads of two of southeast Michigan’s most well-traveled expressways, I-275 and I-94; offering easy access to Detroit, Ann Arbor and Canada. With diversity in culture, land and opportunity, Romulus is keenly focused on quality education, low taxes and a strong track record of safety. For more information about the City of Romulus, visit www.romulusgov.com
About Detroit Region Aerotropolis
The Detroit Region Aerotropolis is a four-community, two-county public-private economic development partnership with the Wayne County Airport Authority, dedicated to transforming the region into a global hub for manufacturing, logistics and aviation. Learn more at www.detroitaero.org.
About Airspace Link
Airspace Link’s vision is to create a world where the safe integration of drones fuels human progress, advancing social equity, the environment, and the economy. Founded in Detroit in 2018, Airspace Link is one of the few FAA-approved UAS Service Suppliers of the Low Altitude Authorization & Notification Capability (LAANC). Airspace Link’s cloud-based platform, AirHub® Portal, provides the digital infrastructure required to support the safe use of recreational and commercial drone use in communities at scale, supporting the growth of drone operations, drone service providers, drone manufacturers, package delivery, and air taxi deployment in the future. Learn more at www.airspacelink.com.