14th May 2019 for immediate use
LONDON CITY PUTS BACK REVIEW OF ITS CONCENTRATED FLIGHT PATHS
London City Airport has put back its plans to review its flights paths. Information from the Civil Aviation Authority (1), which will oversee the process, reveals that the airport has decided not to start its review, originally expected next month, until the autumn. It is thought the delay is to avoid a clash with consultation on its Master Plan, expected to be released shortly, which might include options for further expansion at the airport.
London City has been asked to review its flight paths as part of a wider shake-up of flight paths which will take place over the next few years at all airports in London and the South East. City took the controversial step of concentrating all its arrival and departure routes in 2016. The move resulted in a five-fold increase in complaints as particular communities bore the brunt of the noise. Complaints poured in from as far afield as Eltham and the Oval.
John Stewart, chair of campaign group HACAN East, which led the campaign against the concentrated flight paths, said, “We are delighted that the flight paths are being reviewed but the sooner it happens the better. So many people are suffering from the noise. Some have had their lives turned upside down by it. We will be pressing for more routes to be introduced so that no one community is overflown all day long. Everybody should have a break from the noise.”
London City’s Master Plan will lay out options for future development of the airport over the next couple of decades or so. It is expected that the airport will consider applying for the current cap of 111,000 flights allowed to use the airport each year to be lifted. It is likely to consult on the Master Plan this summer.
Stewart said, “There will be widespread opposition to the lifting of the cap. It provides reassurance for residents that flight numbers will not increase indefinitely. At present there are around 85,000 flights a year using the airport. The current cap is high enough for an airport situated in a densely populated corner of London.”
All airports in the UK will be looking again at their flights paths over the next few years as air traffic controllers move from a ground-based system to a satellite system to guide planes in and out of airports. The new system allows for more precise flight paths which will reduce fuel costs for the airlines and improve the resilience of airports.
For further information: John Stewart on 0207 737 6641 or 07957385650