London City airport rules out extended operating hours

A delayed new master plan has been published by London City airport following the impact of Covid-19.

The Docklands airport proposes to maintain its existing eight-hour night time flight curfew and has no immediate plans to seek to extend its operating hours, either during the week or at weekends, following consultation feedback.

Originally due to be published in March, the decision was made to delay the publication of the plan and focus on supporting passengers, staff and local communities during pandemic and national lockdown.

The publication sets out a long-term vision for how the airport can grow in a sustainable and responsible way, supporting London’s recovery from Covid.

It follows a 16-week consultation carried out in summer 2019.

All comments received from local residents, stakeholders and passengers during the consultation period were taken into account in finalising the master plan, according to te Docklands airport.

The master plan is a non-statutory document that replaces the airport’s previous 2006  plan.

It outlines how the capital’s most central airport can:

  • provide capacity for up to 11 million passengers and 151,000 aircraft movements a year by making best use of our existing runway in line with government policy
  • grow within its existing noise contour limit and seek to reduce its area over time by operating more cleaner, quieter, new generation of aircraft
  • assist the recovery of London from Covid-19 by supporting up to 5,300 local jobs and contributing over £2 billion to the UK economy
  • reduce emissions by targeting 90% of journeys to and from the airport being made by public and sustainable transport modes
  • provide improved connectivity to more domestic and European leisure and business destinations, supporting inward investment, tourism, and exports.

 The master plan is also focused on the airport’s commitment to working with key industry, governmental and community partners to reduce its overall carbon emissions and become net-zero by 2050 in line with government policy.

Chef executive Robert Sinclair said: “This plan, which has been shaped by local feedback, aspiration and emerging policy, sets out how the airport will recover and return to growth in the years to come.

“In the short term, it is clear that our focus has to be on recovering from the devastating impacts of COVID-19, supporting our communities and welcoming back passengers and airlines to London’s most central airport.

“While the shock of the pandemic has been significant, history shows us that aviation is an incredibly resilient industry as people’s desire to travel, whether for business or leisure, is never diminished for long.

“Aviation is also a key enabler of other industries, such as trade, tourism, hospitality, retail and conferences, protecting and generating jobs and economic prosperity. As the country plans its recovery, I am convinced that aviation will play a key role as the UK builds back better.

“And in that regard, we have a vital role to play in restoring London’s fortunes.

“We believe that the fundamentals underpinning the future prospects of London City airport remain; our location in the heart of east London, our proximity to key London financial districts and attractions, our portfolio of leading British and European airlines, our unique passenger proposition and our ability to connect domestically and globally in a fast and convenient manner.

“This master plan shows what can be achieved in the future and demonstrates how London City airport can continue to be a generator of jobs and wealth through sustainable, responsible growth.”

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