London City Airport plans to double its passenger capacity

London City airport (LCY) has revealed expansion plans that will see the airport double its passenger capacity over the next ten years.

The airport has submitted an application to the London Borough of Newham for approval to commence a £200 million expansion project. The proposals will enable up to 120,000 aircraft movements at the airport and effectively double its passenger numbers to six million over the next ten years,

The proposed plans include extending the terminal and adding a new taxi lane and new parking stands for larger planes. The airport is not proposing a second runway as it already has permission to handle up to 120,000 flights yearly under an application granted in 2009.

Based in the Royal Docks, LCY serves the business and political centres of Canary Wharf, The City and Westminster, and handles 70,000 flight movements and 3 million passengers per annum.

According to Declan Collier, chief executive of the airport, the expansion of LCY is vital, not just to satisfy the increasing demand for business travel, but also for the development of the Royal Docks and the east of London.

‘The airport currently employs just under 2,100 people, of which more than 60 percent are local. The proposed development has the potential to create as many as 1,500 new jobs, providing further employment in east London,’ Collier said.

‘In terms of the wider UK economy, the airport already contributes £750 million every year – through business and leisure tourist spend, the operation of businesses on site, productivity savings and air passenger duty – and when this project is completed, we can expect to double that amount,’ he added.

The airport, owned by American infrastructure fund, GIP, which also has Gatwick and Edinburgh airports in its portfolio, is also in discussions with the Davies Commission regarding the optimal use of existing infrastructure, proposals for new infrastructure as well as its capacity to accommodate more short-haul flights that will help relieve pressure on other airports.