The competition for an extra airport runway

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Over the last couple of years, there’s been a media frenzy about whether Heathrow, Gatwick, or Stanstead deserve an extra runway. Numerous politicians and public figures have come out in favour of one or another, while environmental campaigners have heavily criticised the idea of adding an extra runway to Heathrow.

airportMany yet have claimed that Heathrow, being the main airport in London, would be the most befitting of such an expansion. With that said, the proposed new runway, wherever it was built, will cost billions of pounds.

The Impact of an extra runway

With many hotels near Heathrow Airport, adding a third runway would only increase environmental and noise pollution in the area for residents and travellers who decide to stay close to the airport – whether it because they need to be close to the airport so that they can quickly fly out or else.

Some have said that building a similar extra runway at Gatwick airport would take half the time, half the cost, and at a fraction of the environmental impact. Gatwickobviously.com believes that Gatwick is, in fact, the only sensible choice, in a time where Britain’s need to expand aviation has never been greater.

Already, Gatwick is the most connected airport in the UK, offering connections to five continents. As a result of the increased competition between Heathrow and Gatwick, travellers would benefit from better service, and some hope – lower fares.

Gatwick has the advantage of not having to build their runway over the m25 (unlike Heathrow) and Gatwick’s plan for expansion will cost the taxpayer nothing while Gatwick’s will cost the taxpayer 5.7 billion pounds.

Gatwick seems to be the better choice from an environmental point of view

So on the surface, Gatwick seems to have the advantage. It will cost less, be cheaper to run, and stands to help London have two world class airports, similarly to cities like New York and Tokyo. So why are so many in favour of Heathrow building the additional runway?

Well, the argument is that the Heathrow expansion will create the most jobs and make the most money for the country. As we’ve learnt so far, Gatwick seems to be the better choice for the long-term environmental future of the city.

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