Update: Stansted Airport reacts to news there will be no new runway until at least 2050 following Airports Commission report
PUBLISHED: 12:29 17 December 2013 | UPDATED: 12:29 17 December 2013
Stansted Airport has not been included in options to expand the country’s aviation capacity, it has been announced today.
This morning the Airports Commission has announced proposals which could see a new runway at either Gatwick and Heathrow but not Stansted.
The independent review concludes that there is a need for one additional runway to be in operation in the south east of the UK by 2030.
The commission’s analysis also indicates that there is likely to be a demand for a second additional runway to be operational by 2050.
In a statement released by the Airports Commission it said: “The Commission has not shortlisted proposals for expansion at Stansted or Birmingham, however, there is likely to be a case for considering them as potential options for any second new runway by 2050. In its final report the Commission will set out its recommendations on the process for decision making on additional capacity beyond 2030.”
Chief executive for Manchester Airports Group, which is responsible for Stansted, said: “Stansted welcomes the commission’s support for measures to increase capacity at the airport in the short term, including improving rail links between the airport and central London. We also support the commission’s finding that Stansted is one of the viable options for a runway beyond 2030.
“Stansted has a bright future, indeed we are the only London airport that can grow substantially in the next ten years. Since we took ownership in February this year we have already signed up new airlines and destinations to meet growing passenger demand.
“Our immediate priority is to continue to transform the airport experience for our passengers.”
The proposal to be considered for Gatwick Airport could see one new runway to the south of the existing one.
There are two options for Heathrow: proposals for one new 3,500m runway to the northwest or plans to extend the existing northern runway to at least 6,000m, enabling the extended runway to operate as two independent runways.
The commission has not ruled out future plans for an airport in the Thames Estuary but said there are “too many uncertainties and challenges” at this stage for it to be considered.
Sir Howard Davies, chair of the commission, said: “Decisions on airport capacity are important national strategic choices and must be based upon the best evidence available. The commission has undertaken a fresh, comprehensive and transparent study of the issues. This report is the product of extensive consultation, independent analysis and careful consideration by the commissioners.”