Birmingham Airport today (26 July) published its response to the Airports Commission's challenge to deliver aviation capacity in the long-term. The proposals cost under £7bn to deliver and offer a solution to the UK’s long-term aviation challenge, according to the airport.
The airport's submission outlines development plans, including the potential for more runway capacity to the east of the existing airport sometime after 2030. Birmingham handles around nine million passengers a year and its current runway infrastructure has the capability of servicing up to 27 million more passengers. Under new proposals, Birmingham Airport could provide capacity for at least 70 million passengers from 2030.
It is estimated that by using the new runway for night flights, the airport could remove over 13,000 people out of the 57dB night noise contour. This represents a reduction of 100% and would deliver improvements to the quality of life for local communities.
Paul Kehoe, chief executive of Birmingham Airport, said, “We believe that our proposal ticks all of the Airports Commission’s boxes. We have the potential to grow the airport to eventually serve 70 million passengers – the equivalent of the size of Heathrow today – whilst reducing the number of people currently affected by night noise.”
The submission includes written endorsements from nearly 150 local businesses, LEPs, Chambers of Commerce and district councils who support the plans. The airport will be rolling out a local community engagement programme to inform communities about the proposals and hear their views over the autumn.
“People in the Midlands are united behind our proposals. Our submission has widespread support from stakeholders including the LEPs, local councils and local businesses. This is because people recognise that to grow local economies outside the South East and rebalance growth we need the direct international connectivity to encourage inward investment and support trade,” Kehoe added.
The proposals claim making maximum use of the existing runway could deliver 243,000 jobs to the Midlands. The first community meeting will take place on 30 July in Coleshill, North Warwickshire. A wider engagement programme is planned for the autumn.