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A Heathrow extension saving residents and taxpayers pain (Financial Times)

    Neil Collins reported on the recent CPS publication "Double up on Heathrow" in Saturday's Financial Times. 

    To read the full article, visit the Financial Times website (£). 

    "If you have a clever idea for solving London’s airport problem, it’s too late to tell the Davies Commission. The final flourish came this week with the fantasy island proposals east of the City, where architect Lord Foster had wanted a £50bn extravaganza, designed by him, of course. He’s now pared that down to a mere £23bn, which sounds like a bargain compared with Boris Island, last costed at £65bn.

    It’s quite a price to spare the vociferous inhabitants of Richmond and Kew their unwanted dawn chorus. However, a clever proposal from Jock Lowe and Mark Bostock, for the Centre for Policy Studies, would do so for much less.

    They noticed that Heathrow’s runways are much longer than modern jets need, so much so that, extended to the west, they would be twice as long. There’s the little matter of sinking the M25 into a tunnel, but that cost is measured in billions, not tens of billions.

    Furthermore, the doubling of capacity would be so commercially attractive that no taxpayer subsidy would be needed. Those early flights that cause so much trouble would land on the runway extensions, allowing them to fly over London high enough to turn the roar into an irritation.

    Messrs Lowe and Bostock have further ideas to link the main line at West Drayton to the airport, but the runways are probably ambitious enough for now. Sir Howard Davies has much to chew on."

    To read the full article, visit the Financial Times website (£). 

    Date added: Monday 22nd July 2013