Government finally clears airport expansion… for London City
While the major airports at Heathrow and Gatwick are left hanging for a government decision on construction of a new runway, a lesser southeast airport has been cleared for expansion.
The government has given planning permission to London City Airport, in the Royal Docks area of the capital, to invest £344m in an expansion programme.
The terminal will be extended, and there will be new aircraft taxiway and parking spaces for planes. This will allow more planes, and more modern planes, to use the airport.
The planning decision was formally approved by transport secretary Chris Grayling and the secretary of state for communities & local government Sajid Javid.
Communities secretary Sajid Javid said: “This decision clearly indicates that Britain is open for business. The expansion of both the airport and terminal building will provide a real boost to economic growth and job creation.
Local residents affected by the increase in air traffic will get compensation.
Civil Engineering Contractors Association (CECA) said that the £344m investment was welcome but it would prefer to see clearance for Heathrow’s planned £18.6bn investment.
CECA head of external affairs Marie-Claude Hemming said: “We welcome this announcement, but it is a far cry from solving the UK’s airport capacity deficit. International connectivity will become even more important for the British economy once we leave the European Union. The government needs to grasp the nettle and commit to a programme of airport expansion. This is a decision of national importance that must not be further delayed due to party political considerations.
“Last year, the independent Davies Commission recommended the expansion of Heathrow, a policy that CECA supports. However, what is important now, whether the government opts to expand Heathrow or Gatwick, is that a decision is taken without delay. Time and again this issue has been kicked into the long grass. We call on Theresa May to show that her government is of a different stripe, and commit to a solution to show Britain will be open for business in a post-Brexit world.”
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This article was published on 28 Jul 2016 (last updated on 28 Jul 2016).