London City airport expansion gets green light from ministers

London Canary Wharf

Ministers have given the go-ahead for a £344m expansion of London City airport.

The plans include an extended terminal, more space for planes to taxi to and from the runway, and new aircraft stands that will allow bigger, more modern planes to use the airport.

The project will create about 1,600 new jobs at the airport and another 500 during the construction phase, according to London City.

The chancellor, Philip Hammond, the transport secretary, Chris Grayling, and the communities secretary, Sajid Javid, gave the formal green light to the plan.

It will allow more flights to and from the airport at peak times, and the extended terminal will accommodate more passengers.

The airport, which is close to Canary Wharf in east London, currently serves about 4 million passengers a year.

Javid said local residents affected by the increase in air traffic would be offered a generous compensation package.

Hammond said it was a vote of confidence in the resilience of the UK economy.

“Making it easier to visit and do business in the City of London will help drive forward our economy and further strengthen the city’s status as the world’s leading financial centre,” he said.

A consortium of investors led by the Ontario Teachers’ pension fund and Borealis bought London City airport for about £2bn in February. It was sold by Global Infrastructure Partners, which had bought it from the Irish businessman Dermot Desmond for £750m in 2006.

Transport links around the airport will also be improved as part of the latest investment, with £2.6m earmarked for more trains for the Docklands Light Railway.

The airport will also spend money on a bus and taxi scheme, and on improving pedestrian and cycle routes.

Boris Johnson blocked the airport’s expansion when he was London’s mayor.

Campaigners attempting to rein in its operations because of noise and pollution concerns have previously said expansion would mean a huge increase in flights and disruption over inner north-east London.

Powered by Guardian.co.ukThis article was written by Angela Monaghan, for theguardian.com on Wednesday 27th July 2016 13.46 Europe/Londonguardian.co.uk © Guardian News and Media Limited 2010

 

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