Masterplan outlines growth at airport

A second runway could be built at Birmingham International Airport (BIA) if the owners' latest proposals secure approval.

Publishing its masterplan for consultation this week, BIA said that it plans to extend its runway by 400m so that it can serve more destinations.

It anticipates that the longer runway could be operational by 2012.

But this would be insufficient to deal with predicted passenger growth at the airport, BIA claims. It argues that a further 2,000m runway is needed to accommodate more than half the aircraft traffic by 2030, when passenger numbers will have grown from ten million a year to 33 million.

The second runway would operate independently of the first and would only be used in the daytime, exclusively by quieter aircraft, the masterplan states.

BIA predicts that the airport could support more than 27,000 jobs by 2030 and could generate £957 million of investment in the West Midlands.

It adds that its expansion could reduce travel to other airports outside the region.

BIA managing director Richard Heard said: "Although some elements of the proposals will not be needed for years, the draft masterplan should help to allay our neighbours' uncertainty."

West Midlands Business Transport Group chair Jerry Blackett welcomed the plans but warned that commitments are needed on road and rail access improvements in the next year.

Towards 2030 can be viewed via www.PlanningResource.co.uk.


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