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Joined: Wed Aug 18, 1999 5:49 am

Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 2:53 pm

Two newspapers (see news section) are reporting that the UK is considering a third runway for LHR - much needed, given the airport's growth. The report on T5 is due very soon and airlines are said to be pressing hard for Heathrow to have the new runway. The gov't had hoped to keep plans for a third runway under wraps until the furore over T5 had died down, but there's hardly any chance of that.

Personally, I think it's a very good idea and much needed, but people living around the LHR area. However, LHR is one of the world's most congested hubs and badly needs the runway. It would be an unexpecedly courageous act for the UK government to consider this and most welcome.
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RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 3:21 pm

Intersting news isn't it. I recall in the early 90s a third runway was planned to go behind T4, parallel to 27L, so I guess 27L would become 27C! Yes, it would be a good thing for UK air transport, but I think it will be a long way off. Can you imagine the opposition to such a scheme, not least from the people of Windsor, Hatton Cross etc etc?

Given the length of time the T5 enquiry took, we must allow LHR to expand but without such lengthy enquiries which don't happen in other parts of the world (take Paris CDG for instance) and give the airlines and the travelling public what they want, LHR as a hub and not some other European outstation.


RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 4:22 pm

The way I understand it, there are two separate proposals: One is to build a fifth terminal at Heathrow, as current gate usage and terminal capacity is maxed out. This "T5" campaign has been in the works for several years now. When I worked at LHR, I was told by insiders that the earliest T5 would open is 2006. Hence, the new terminal is not a question of "if" but rather "when." It is rumoured that BA will likely shift its major international flights into T5 just as they did when Terminal 4 opened in the late 80's. In addition, plans are already underway to extend the Underground's Piccadilly line from Terminal 4 (where the line ends) to the new T5 as well as extend the Heathrow Express line which runs from Paddington Station.

The other proposal is to build a third runway at LHR, unquestionably necessary for the Airport, and understandably upsetting to its neighbours. While the residents of Hounslow and other nearby communities are against the construction of a third runway, some have shifted their protests to the more immediate problem of nighttime departures/arrivals at Heathrow. Sleep is being interrupted by a surge in late-night air traffic. But there are simply not enough daytime take-off/landing slots to accomodate the growing number of flights at LHR.

Like a lot of major hubs, Heathrow is bursting at the seams. There is no question at least one more additional runway is needed to improve efficiency and reduce congestion. While a third runway is not as imminent as a fifth terminal, many feel it's only a matter of time before both will be become reality.

As a side note, for anyone who might be interested, there is a TV series called "Airport," a fun, and serious look at behind the scenes activities at Heathrow. It's rarely boring - even for non aviation enthusiasts. You can sometimes catch an episode on BBC America or PBS.
go canada!
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RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 8:19 pm

the proposals are that terminal five will go ahead AND that a new runway will be built AS well.

The major airlines, especially BA have been pushing for both and they will get both.The terminal five issue will be sorted out this year, the government can now push it through parliament.In the meantime the third runway will take shape next year.terminal five is to be decided first, then the runway, the reason for doing so that agreeing both at the same time would be a political nightmare for the UK government so one will be pushed throught then the runway project will take off once the complaints about terminal five die down.

The other option which the airlines want is another runway at London Gatwick.this would be agreed if the heathrow option doesnt go ahead though according to the press and knowing uk aviation a new gatiwck runway will also be given the go-ahead.

The problem with the terminal five inquiry result is that its been oked but the inquiry said no more actual flights, this is a stupid idea.The UK government are going to raise the number of flights, since they believe that noise levels are actually reducing at heathrow.300 000 are affected by noise rather than 2.3 million 10-15 years ago.

The uk government is desperate to increase tourism after the foot and mouth crisis, which will take years for britain to fully recover.allowing our airports to grow is a vital step.This lab goevrnment is very very concerned about the economy and a 'downturn'.BA and others have warned that unless heathrow grows then it will lose more market share-that means job losses and losses in revenue.So heathrow expanision will be heralded as the government investing in Britains future and believing in britain, the enviromental concerns will be sidelined by the desire to keep business happy and to do every possible to increase tourism and make sure that britain doesnt get invloved in a world recession.

the new runway at heathrow is expected to be used for smaller planes and short-distance flights, rather than long-haul, thereby decreasing the burden on the other runways .by stating it is for short-haul aircraft, the idea is also to counter environmental concerns since short-haul flights normally land in daytime hours and not late at night.

Britain is also looking at building a new airport at doncaster, in the north.the idea is that this new airport would grow to the size of manchester, therey creating thousands of jobs in a economic blackspot.

Airport is also on BBC1 and UK digital tv.ITs fantastic, the new series carries a lot of features on qantas and on cyprus airways.
It is amazing what can be accomplised when nobody takes the credit
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RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 11:03 pm

I thought there were three runways already at Heathrow?
Muhammad Ali: "Superman don’t need no seat belt." Flight Attendant: "Superman don’t need no airplane, either."
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RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 11:16 pm

There are, but the third (which is shorter than, and crosses the other two runways) hasn't been used in many years.
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RE: Third Heathrow Runway!

Mon Jun 25, 2001 11:54 pm

I would like to see a new parallel runway to 9R/9L/27R/27L be built, as well as T5. I think with both of these, the US/UK Open Skies agreement could become much more of a possibility.

I also enjoy watching Airport too. My only regret is that the PBS station here in Boston only shows the same three episodes (all LHR), although I have seen an episode from LTN when I was in the UK. However, some people in my family think Airport is quite the boring show.

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Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2001 5:14 pm

Viva Stansted!

Thu Jun 28, 2001 7:32 am

Britain's biggest growth airport. I live under the approach path and i ahve no probelm with more flights, lets bring em in to Stansted!

Btw, the US/UK open slies is seen as a little too UK and not quite enough US for the British carriers.

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