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Independent proposal group Heathrow Hub has submitted a redrafted bid to transport secretary Chris Grayling to extend the airport’s existing northern runway rather than building a new one.
The group maintains that its Extended Northern Runway (ENR) scheme is cheaper, simpler and quieter than the current third runway plans.
It claims the first phase of the project could be completed for £3.9 billion – compared to the estimated £14 billion for a new runway – and could deliver an additional 70,000 aircraft movements annually as soon as 2026.
The redrafted proposal was submitted in response to a recent report by the Transport Select Committee, which set out a number of aspects Parliament must consider when voting on the third runway project, including cost, the environment and the impact on the M25.
Heathrow Hub claims flaws in the airport’s third runway plan risk delaying the government’s decision further. It says it still believes the project has no hope of being delivered after the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) investigates the scheme’s affordability.
The group also still says the third runway would impact passengers in the form of increased airport charges.
Jock Lowe, director of Heathrow Hub, said: “Heathrow airport still has no idea how it is going to get its third runway over the M25.
“Mr Grayling is on record as saying the main reason our scheme has not been chosen thus far is that Heathrow airport refused to say it would implement it. It is outrageous that Heathrow airport should have abused its position by vetoing our scheme, which was deemed viable and deliverable by the Airports Commission.”
Earlier this month, businesses and employment unions came out in favour of building a third runway at Heathrow, with airport CEO John Holland-Kaye saying their support shows “politicians can be confident it’s the right decision for Britain”.