The expansion of London Heathrow took a major leap forward today (February 2) after the UK government published its draft National Policy Statement (NPS) outlining its strategy for the construction of a third runway and supporting infrastructure at the airport.
The move marks the beginning of a 16-week public consultation period, after which a final version of the NPS will be voted on by Parliament this coming winter. An earlier report by market research firm ComRes found that 74% of 130 MPs surveyed backed a third runway at London Heathrow.
Emma Gilthorpe, executive director for expansion, London Heathrow Airport, said, “The launch of the government’s national policy statement consultation is an important milestone in the delivery of Heathrow’s expansion plans. We look forward to working with the government, our local communities and our airlines throughout this consultation period to ensure Heathrow expansion is affordable and benefits all of Britain.”
Virendra Sharma, MP for Ealing Southall, said, “It is encouraging to see that the government is moving swiftly. The need for additional airport capacity has become even more critical following the decision to leave the European Union. Heathrow expansion will provide unrivalled connectivity to new and emerging markets, boosting international trade and cementing London’s role as a true outward-looking global city.
“Heathrow’s new plan for expansion can be delivered responsibly with clear safeguards in place, it has the potential to eradicate local youth unemployment, it will deliver the skills required to build and operate the expanded airport, and it is one that I along with a majority of constituents support.”
Written by Dan Symonds