The highly respected travel journalist and broadcaster Simon Calder has confirmed in The Independent Newspaper what many believe to be the case, that the new owners of Gatwick Airport intend to build a second runway regardless – even if it loses out to Heathrow when the Government finally rules, after many delays, on airport expansion.
A decision on where to build a new runway in South-east England is expected within days. It is thought the Prime Minister, who is said to be close to Sir Howard Davies, will overrule environmental objections, including from within her Cabinet, and insist that Heathrow gets the go-ahead to grow.
It will of course mean widespread disruption to communities and high density conurbations outside of the airport footprint. It will also put immense pressure on an already gridlocked motorways system surrounding the London urban airport.
Current delays are so bad that DHL already provide a helicopter shuttle service from LHR to central London just to expedite delivery of small density high value airfreight ....
But The Independent understands that Gatwick’s bosses intend to press ahead with a second runway regardless of the Government’s decision. They believe growth at the Sussex airport justifies expansion, and that Theresa May will not dare to block a project that shows Britain is still in business – even though the Davies Commission working on a narrow brief regard two runways as unnecessary.
After three years research, Sir Howard Davies’ Airports Commission reported in July 2015 and unanimously favoured a third runway at Heathrow, however the commission - having drilled through some £20million - and chaired by Sir Howard Davies held out a lifeline and declared that Gatwick and an extended northern runway at Heathrow were also “credible options”. A sort of £20million each way bet? Everyone wins....
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