30 November 2022, Virtual
12 December 2022, etc.venues Monument, London
Business Travel Show Europe, presented by The BTN
Heathrow has come up with three options for a third runway to the north, north-west or south-west of the existing airport.
The UK’s current hub airport is submitting the three “outline options” for a new runway to the Airports Commission, which is looking at the issue of the UK’s hub capacity.
Heathrow said that any of these sites would be “quicker and cheaper than building a new hub airport” and that three runways would be “enough to maintain UK’s global hub status for foreseeable future”.
The current coalition government has vowed not to support a third runway at Heathrow during this parliament. But the possibility of Heathrow expansion is believed to be back on the table due to the fact that the Airports Commission will not report fully until after the next general election in the summer of 2015.
London mayor Boris Johnson is opposed to any expansion of Heathrow and has proposed three other options including two potential sites for a new hub airport.
“Each option has its particular benefits, but Heathrow believes the two westerly options offer clear advantages,” said the airport in a statement. “They deliver a full-length third runway while minimising the impact on the local community from noise and compulsory house purchases.
“The north-west option performs better on noise and residential property impact than the north option whilst costing slightly more and taking slightly longer to build.
“The south west-option further improves the situation for local residents but increases the cost, timescale and construction complexity. The north option is the quickest and cheapest, but offers the least noise benefits and has the biggest residential property impact.”
Heathrow said that all three options would be able to deliver extra capacity by 2025 to 2029 and would cost an estimated £14-18 billion. The overall cost of a new hub airport to replace Heathrow has been estimated at £70-£80 billion including new rail and road links.
Colin Matthews, Heathrow’s chief executive, said, “After half a century of vigorous debate but little action, it is clear the UK desperately needs a single hub airport with the capacity to provide the links to emerging economies which can boost UK jobs, GDP and trade.
“It is clear that the best solution for taxpayers, passengers and business is to build on the strength we already have at Heathrow. Today we are showing how that vision can be achieved whilst keeping the impact on local residents to an absolute minimum.”
Heathrow said that the two westerly options were “radically different from the old, short third runway proposed by BAA in the last decade”.
The airport said that a third runway would raise capacity from the current 480,000 flights per year to 740,000, which would allow it to cater for 130 million passengers.
The Airports Commission is due to submit an interim report by the end of 2013 which will give recommendations on whether the UK needs more hub capacity and also a shortlist of options of how any increase in capacity can be achieved.