In a move described by some as ‘inspired’ and others as ‘madder than a bag of squirrels’; Secretary of State for Transport Patrick Mcloughlin has revealed that the Airports Commission have suggested a hybrid solution to the issue of expanding either Heathrow or Gatwick Airport.
He proceeded to reveal that Heathrow’s third runway will not be built to the north-west of the current airport – as is currently the proposed solution – with it instead being built 40 miles away on brownfield land close to Gatwick. Planes landing at Heathrow’s new South-East runway will then taxi past Gatwick’s terminal building and onto a dedicated lane of the M25 for an 80 minute journey to the gate.
John Longworth, director general at the British Chambers of Commerce took heart in the divulged details. ‘It is our belief that the expansion of Heathrow as the UK’s primary hub airport is vital to the continued success of UK PLC.’ He said. ‘The idea of a third runway has always been contentious, but we believe the solution put forward is most innovative. Most Heathrow passengers are used to sitting on the apron for upwards of an hour waiting for a take-off slot. This expansion option now means that they will feel like they’re getting somewhere as they slowly taxi around the M25. Plus, the need for the aircraft to stop and refuel at Cobham Services will be a great boon to shopping in the area as passengers get off to stretch their legs and buy an overpriced king-sized Snickers.’
james_doc (hat-tip Prime Mover)