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Mon November 30 2020

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London City Airport puts £500m expansion plans on hold

17 Aug London City Airport has decided to ‘temporarily pause’ its £500m expansion programme due to reduced demand for flying.

BAM Nuttall has built a new deck over the dock to increase plane capacity. Future phases are now on hold though
BAM Nuttall has built a new deck over the dock to increase plane capacity. Future phases are now on hold though

Current work will continue on new aircraft stands, a full-length parallel taxiway and new passenger facilities, as these are nearing completion. But work on further stages, including the new terminal extension, is being re-evaluated.

Commercial flights were suspended at City Airport at the height of the Covid-19 crisis, and resumed on 21st June. During the suspension of flights, the airport worked with contractors to adapt working methods to meet new health and safety standards and made progress with key elements of the programme.

By the end of 2020, the airport will have completed a number of projects to deliver new airside infrastructure and capacity. This includes eight new aircraft stands and a full length parallel taxiway providing the ability to allow 45 aircraft movements per hour, when demand returns. Next month a new immigration facility will be opened to passengers to speed arrivals passing through the gates. A new baggage facility will be operational next summer.

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However, as it has become clear that the recovery to previous levels of traffic will take longer than initially expected, the timing of the next phases of the development programme, including the new terminal extension, have been put on hold and the phasing is being revaluated.

London City Airport chief executive Robert Sinclair said: “For the time being, we have taken the decision to focus our attention on delivering the vital additional airfield infrastructure which will provide our existing and prospective airline customers with the potential to bring new generation aircraft to this airport in greater numbers, which will be a crucial aspect of how we build a better, more sustainable airport.

“Completing the terminal extension and new east pier very much remains part of our future, and, with the foundations for both in place, we stand ready to take those projects forward when demand returns.”

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