During a press event at The Shard this morning, Sir Terry Farrell and London Gatwick CEO Stewart Wingate revealed the findings of new research into a potential expansion of Gatwick Airport (London) that will be submitted to the Airports Commission in May 2014. The announcement was made as the airport launched its Gatwick Obviously campaign.
Sir Terry Farrell said: “I have no doubt that with a second runway, Gatwick will deliver more balanced, and more widely spread, economic growth for London and the South East. Expansion at Gatwick could do for South London and the wider region what the Olympics did for East London and give a huge boost in terms of jobs, housing and regeneration.”
The research suggests that the construction of an additional runway at Gatwick would provide 27 more connections to more destinations than a third runway at Heathrow (442 at Gatwick to 415 at Heathrow). Speed was also addressed in the findings, with the research suggesting that the Gatwick expansion would cater for 11 million more passengers by 2050 than a three-runway Heathrow and could be ready for the first flights by 2050.
Stewart Wingate said: "The next runway needs to bring the greatest economic return for the UK at the lowest environmental cost. That makes Gatwick the obvious answer as we will be able to connect to more destinations in the future because we are the only airport to cater for all airline models.
“It is the best solution that embraces long term aviation trends. It can also be delivered in less time with less cost and less noise. Most importantly, passengers will benefit from more choice and better value for money. If chosen - and with swift decision making - we are committing today to start work on site in the next Parliament.”