25 JUNE 2012
The Business Travel News
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Boris Johnson seems to be ambivalent towards the answer to the London airport problem according to media reports. Whilst still keen on the idea of a four-runway operation in the Thames Estuary he now sees a two-runway Stansted as an interim measure.
Mr Johnson’s views were highlighted by TfL Board Member Dan Moylan (but about to become Chairman of the London Legacy Development Corporation) at a seminar hosted by the Royal Aeronautical Society last week, entitled “Airport Capacity Crisis”. It was chaired by Captain Jock Lowe, the former President of the Society and BA Concorde pilot. A diversity of views were heard, Colin Stanbridge, Chief Executive of the London Chamber of Commerce, eloquently espousing his support for the expansion of Heathrow, and Robin Cooper of Medway Council stating that the estuary schemes were neither practical or wanted by the people of Kent.
Gerry Burn of investment group Rothwell promoted a 2,400m Heathrow satellite on the RAF Northolt site whilst Paul Haskins, London TMA Manager at NATS, said that whatever came up NATS could cope. Both Jock Lowe and Captain John Alsford of Emirates, noted that substantial more capacity could be got out of Heathrow. www.aerosociety.com
The debate moves on to the Emmanuel Centre, in Westminster, next Wednesday (27 June) when the London Evening Standard hosts an early evening discussion, including Willie Walsh, who will put the IAG view, Dan Moylan representing Boris Johnson, writer Alain de Botton, CBI Chief Policy Director Katja Hall and environmental campaigner Tamsin Omond. www.standardevents.co.uk/airports