More airport capacity
Readers living outside London and the south east of England can turn away now for the debate on whether there is enough airport capacity in the south east has taken another turn.
Regular readers will be aware that CD-Traveller has pointed out before that there is spare capacity at some airports such as Gatwick and Stansted. Now London’s Evening Standard is reporting that a report from the London Assembly is saying that the south east has enough runways and that two – Luton and Stansted – are operating at only 50% capacity. It also suggests that Heathrow could handle an extra 20 million passengers year if larger aircraft were used.
The same report also suggests that 80% of all the people using Heathrow flew direct to their destination and did not use it to change from one flight to another. This seems to contradict the claim particularly made by airlines that Heathrow is an important hub airport.
Boris Johnson, London’s mayor, wants an estuary airport built but surely based on this report he doesn’t need that either. Unless he plans on closing Heathrow at some stage and is now thinking of this idea as a replacement?
But this is another report that will gather dust as no one will act on it. Why? Because the government commissioned study into airports won’t deliver its report until after the next election giving present politicians a convenient opportunity to do nothing.
And travellers and householders in affected regions will have to put up with it. And all the rest of you living outside England’s south east will mutter into their breakfast porridge and wonder why the world is so London-centric.