Heathrow gears up for December runway decision

Heathrow gears up for December runway decision

Designers, architects and suppliers are being prepared by Heathrow to build a third runway as the airport hopes to receive the go-ahead from the government in December.

Contracts would look to be awarded in January for the workers it will need in the first couple of years to receive planning consent.

Chief executive John Holland-Kaye told the Financial Times: “We are aiming to get a positive decision from the government in December and then we’ll be able to award those contracts the following month which will let us get on with things quickly.”

He said he remained confident that the government would give Heathrow the backing to build its third runway, over rival Gatwick.

The timing of Chinese president Xi Jinping’s visit to the UK this month highlighted the urgent need to expand Heathrow.

“If the government wants to be China’s partner in the west you need to be able to trade with all the major cities in China,” Holland-Kaye said.

“At the moment we’ve only got four. There is no likelihood that any of the other airports in the UK are going to be able to fill in the direct regular flights to Chinese cities.”

His comments came as Heathrow announced a 4.1% rise in turnover to £2.1 billion in the nine months to September 30.

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