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Fri May 14 2021

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Gatwick axes £350m of building works

28 Aug 20 Gatwick Airport in Surrey is cutting its capital works spending by more than £350m after suffering a 66% fall in passenger numbers in the first half of 2020.

Planned capital expenditure has been reduced by £157m for 2020 and £196m for 2021.  Operational costs have been also reduced by more than £100m through a variety of actions including consolidating air traffic to one terminal allowing for infrastructure shutdowns, 600 redundancies (24% of total roster) and termination of fixed term contracts.

Revenue was down 61% in the first half to £144.2m, resulting in an after tax loss of £321m.

Among the projects impacted is the Pier 6 programme, a £180m project being built by Bechtel. Enabling works, including taxiway alignment and stand reconfiguration, have been completed and construction works on the main extension to Pier 6 began earlier this year. However, this programme is now in the process of being put on hold, with a view to restarting again in 2022 if and when airline traffic picks up again.

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Gatwick Airport is 50.01% owned by French construction group Vinci. Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP) owns the other 49.99%

Gatwick Airport chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “Like any other international airport, the negative impact of Covid-19 on our passenger numbers and air traffic at the start of the year was dramatic and, although there are small signs of recovery, it is a trend we expect to continue to see.  However, we are focussed on ensuring the business remains robust and is best placed to take advantage of future growth.

“As with any responsible company we have protected our financial resilience by significantly reducing our operational costs and capital expenditure.   We are going through a proposed company-wide restructuring programme and I want to thank all my staff for their hard work to date whilst we go through this difficult time.  We will emerge a fitter and stronger organisation, best placed to remain flexible and agile in responding to growth opportunities. “

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