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End these flights of fancy over airports
5:50am Thursday 26th September 2013 in News
ESSEX County Council has urged a Government commission to “get real” on the future of aviation in the county.
Creating a second runway at Stansted and a hub airport in the Thames Estuary are two of the options being considered by the Davies Commission in a bid to increase Britain’s air capacity.
According to figures from the Mayor of London’s office,a new hub airport on the Isle of Grain would cost between £47billion and £68billion while an airport in the outer Thames Estuary would cost between £63 billion and £84billion.
The Government is also considering building a second runway at Stansted.
In their response to the commission, County Hall said: “We believe the commission should focus on realistic, affordable and practical options the UK can afford and deliver.
“It is time to end the flights of fancy and time to get real on aviation.”
In its objections to a new Thames airport, the council raised concerns about the impact on the environment, cost, accessibility, disruption to Heathrow and the West London economy, the impact on wildlife, blight from fog and reliance on public funding.
The county council response also claims the population of Braintree district wouldincrease by 16 per cent if a Stansted super-hub was created.
County council leader David Finch said: “The UK does not have the time or the money to waste on unpractical or undeliverable schemes that could suck up a sum of taxpayers’ money equivalent to twice the UK’s defence budget.
“Any proposal for a giant super-hub airport at Stansted is completely unacceptable to the council and Essex residents.
“If Ministers in London do impose further capacity on our airport, they need to know that a bill comes with that.
“We would need assurances that the environmental impact would be minimised and that there would be massive investment in road and rail infrastructure for Essex.”
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