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6 JULY 2009
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PLYMOUTH CITY AIRPORT is to lose its short alternative runway after part of its land has been sold for housing development by AIM listed Sutton Harbour Group which owns both the property and resident airline Air Southwest. The airline had previously said that a multi-million pound investment programme would take place once the land disposal had been concluded. This is likely to include new apron facilities, taxiways, hangar and a possible extension of the runway allowing such aircraft as the BAe Avro series and Embraer 170 to operate with full passenger loads. The lack of a 1200m runway has always been a problem for the airport (and city) since the time that Brymon Airways inaugurated four times daily services to Heathrow in 1983 using 50-seat DHC Dash 7 turboprops. When owned by British Airways the slots were sold. “A problem is that once houses are built on the site the first thing the new owners will do is complain about the airport,” said a former airline employee familiar with local affairs. www.plymouthairport.com
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