Gatwick has begun a public consultation on plans to bring its northern runway into service use alongside its main runway.
The proposed plans would allow the airport’s existing northern runway to be brought into routine use for departing aircraft, by repositioning its centre line 12 metres north in order to enable dual runway operations.
Gatwick says the northern runway could be operational by summer 2029.
It comes in the same week the government’s Department for Transport outlined its commitment to expanding Heathrow with a third runway.
The 12-week Gatwick consultation will run until December 1, 2021, with materials available to view online and local sites in Sussex, Surrey and Kent.
The airport says the majority of the construction works associated with the airfield are contained within the existing airport boundary, and estimated the cost at £500 million – financed privately.
It says the proposed project could create 18,400 additional jobs by 2038 and pump £1.5 billion into the region.
Gatwick says its proposals are “low impact” and “in line with government policy of making best use of existing runways”.
The airport says the project will be delivered “in a sustainable way which helps to achieve the government’s overall goal of net zero emissions by 2050”.
Gatwick chief executive Stewart Wingate said: “Our northern runway proposals will help boost our economy, maintain competition within the London market, open up new connections and support a Global Britain.
“They will also open up exciting new employment opportunities, create additional jobs and further enable travel to visit family and friends, take a leisure break or foster trade and business links. Our proposals are forward looking and seek to bring significant benefits for our region.
“I am confident in our future and very pleased to present these proposals for public consultation.
“We would like to hear views from local residents and anyone interested in our proposals.”