Heathrow calls for fresh ideas on airport expansion

Aaron Morby 4 weeks ago
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Heathrow Airport is launching a pitch process to court innovative ideas on how to deliver its planned airport expansion.

The call for fresh thinking from UK businesses and entrepreneurs includes the possibility of taking on board radical ideas within the existing scope of the third runway plan.

The airport owner has already floated a cut-price option for the third runway project, which includes dropping plans for a new terminal in favour of expanding existing passenger facilities at Terminal 2 and Terminal 5.

This includes phasing construction to incrementally increase terminal capacity in blocks to better match growing demand.

This option would slash £2.5bn from estimated costs bringing the project down to £14bn.

Its call for new ideas about how to improve overall affordability, sustainability or passenger experience comes as Heathrow Airport prepares to finalise its preferred masterplan by the end of the year.

Any organisation or individual that can bring significant value to the critical infrastructure project could be in the frame to become a future commercial development partner.

Interested businesses and entrepreneurs will be told in the next fortnight how they can register their interest and details of the eligibility criteria will be posted online.

From there, time will be given for long listed parties to form top line business cases.  Those that make it through to the short list will be invited to a pitch process with senior Heathrow decision makers.

During the public consultation period last summer wealthy hotel owner Surinder Arora outlined plans to knock a startling £6.7 bn off the cost of the project.

This involved scrapping the expansion of Heathrow Terminal 2 and an airside passenger transit system as well as shifting the runway so that it does not impact on the M25 and M4.

John Holland-Kaye, Chief Executive Officer at Heathrow Airport said: “We have had a number of people approach us during this year’s public consultation, so we have decided to open up a competitive process that will give those with the best ideas a chance to work with us.

“We are willing to work with anyone who shares our values and who is committed to delivering on the promises we have made on the environment, to our neighbours and to the country.”

“As we prepare the final masterplan, it is a good time to listen to any proposals that can help us to make Heathrow the most successful hub airport in the world, in a way that is sustainable, affordable and financeable.”

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