Gatwick unveils plan to increase capacity by 60%

Gatwick Airport expansion plans submitted
By Harry Kemble
07/07/2023
Home » Gatwick unveils plan to increase capacity by 60%

Gatwick Airport is seeking planning permission to bring its existing second runway into daily use alongside its main runway.

Currently, Gatwick’s northern runway is used for taxiing or in emergencies when the main runway is out of use.

However, it has applied for permission to use the northern runway for departing flights from 6am till 11pm.

The plans, which were submitted to the Planning Inspectorate, could see the airport handling around 75 million passengers a year by the late 2030s, up from around 46m currently.

Last year, it handled 32.8 million passengers – 30% less than in 2019.

The airport said a second active runway would create around 14,000 new jobs, including 3,000 at the airport, and inject £1 billion into the region’s economy each year.

It added that plans for another runway have ‘significant support’ from local residents, pointing to a recent YouGov survey of 3,000 people.

Around 78% of residents, who expressed an opinion, were in support of the plans, while around 22% opposed them.

Around 70% of residents said they thought the airport’s plans were important for the region’s economy, while 73% said they were important for job creation.

But 16% and 15% respectively said they were not important for either.

Gatwick CEO Stewart Wingate said: “The northern runway plan will help secure the long-term future of the airport and economic prosperity for thousands of families, businesses and future generations across the region.

“If approved, our plan will also improve airport resilience, meet future passenger demand and increase competition in the London airport market, by providing vital new international connections.

“The consultation and engagement activity over the past two years has been hugely valuable in shaping our plans to ensure they best meet the needs and requirements of local people, as well as our airlines, passengers and other stakeholders.”

He added: “We are confident that our plans are both economically and environmentally robust.”

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