Edinburgh Airport pulls back on expansion plans in its draft Master Plan

18.1.2011 (BBC)

Edinburgh Airport has pulled back on its expansion plans, saying there is no
need to consider a second runway for another 20 years.

The airport’s comments came as it unveiled its draft masterplan, which lays out
development plans until 2040.

Airport owners BAA had expected to reach 13 million passengers per year by 2013,
but does not now expect to reach that number before 2020.

However, BAA said new aircraft hangars and stands would soon be required.

In the shorter term, the masterplan forecasts passenger numbers will grow from 9
million* to 12.3 million per year until 2020, with aircraft movements increasing
from 116,200 to 141,300.   
[* Edinburgh airport had 8,595,247 passengers in 2010
which is down -5% compared to 2009    In 2009 there
were 9,044,337 passengers, up 0.6% on 2008. CAA data]

New aircraft hangars and stands will be built to meet that demand, while transport
facilities at the airport and to the site will be improved.

The airport said the projected developments would be largely within existing

BAA has just completed a £40m expansion and upgrade of the airport, which is
sufficient for up to 13 million passengers per year.

The masterplan estimates passenger numbers could increase to 20.5 million per
year by 2040, with more than half travelling to and from international destinations.
According to projections, aircraft movements could also increase to 200,600 per
year. [There were 100,592 air transport movements at Edinburgh in 2010].

‘Responsible plan’

Kevin Brown, managing director of Edinburgh Airport, said the airport would be
consulting as widely as possible on its masterplan over the next few months.

He added: “Ours is a sustainable and responsible plan, grounded in the reality
of our post-recession economy and keen to capitalise on the opportunities that
will arise when our economy begins to grow again.

“It is important for us therefore to test our plans and provide clarity, certainty
and understanding to local communities, local authorities and wider business and
tourism interests whose futures depend very much on a strong, successful and well-connected

A 14-week public consultation exercise on the draft plans has been launched,
after which a final masterplan will be drawn up.
You can read the master plan here – http://www.edimasterplan.co.uk/ 
See also http://news.scotsman.com/edinburgh/Edinburgh-Airport-passenger-numbers-to.6694226.jp

Edinburgh Airport passenger numbers to rise by three million
18.1.2011 (Scotsman)
ANNUAL passenger numbers at Edinburgh Airport will grow by three million between
this year and 2020, according to a “masterplan” for the site.
The document, which describes how the airport will develop over the next 30 years,
estimates that aircraft movements will increase from 116,200 arrivals and departures
predicted for this year, to 141,300 per year by 2020.
Passenger numbers will grow from nine million to 12.3 million a year by the next
decade, according to the projections, and new aircraft hangars and stands will
be built.
Transport facilities at the airport and to the site will be improved.
The masterplan estimated passenger numbers could increase to 20.5 million per
annum by 2040, with over half travelling to and from international destinations.
Aircraft movements could also increase to 200,600 per year by 2040.
The figures were released as the airport launched a national consultation on
the masterplan today.
Kevin Brown, managing director of Edinburgh Airport, said: “The masterplan is
our vision for our airport, the blueprint for its development over the coming
“It is a document that shows Edinburgh Airport, as Scotland’s busiest airport,
playing a crucial role in the growth and prosperity of Edinburgh, the Lothians
and Scotland as a whole.
“Over the next few months we will be consulting on this masterplan as widely
as possible, gathering opinion and comment from people, communities and organisations
across the country on how our vision fits with their aspirations and plans.
“Ours is a sustainable and responsible plan, grounded in the reality of our post-recession
economy and keen to capitalise on the opportunities that will arise when our economy
begins to grow again.”
The masterplan follows the principles of the UK Government’s 2003 white paper,
The Future of Air Transport, which set out the framework for the development of
major UK airports, including Edinburgh Airport.
The document is an update of the 2006 masterplan and describes how Edinburgh
Airport intends to deliver the white paper’s aims in a “sustainable and responsible”
The 14-week consultation will see Edinburgh Airport speak with those with an
interest in the site, from local communities to the Scottish Government, via a
dedicated website at
Public meetings, face-to-face briefings and written formal responses will also
be part of the consultation
Comments from AirportWatch members:
Edinburgh Airport’s draft Master Plan is now out for 14 weeks consultation, (ending
around end of April) before  BAA finalise it.  And of course, Master Plans are
just airport “wish lists” with no greater authority than that, with no planning
or legal status.
In 2005 Edinburgh had 8.44M passengers, and 109,249 ATMs.
The Committee on Climate Change Report of December 2009 allows an uplift of 60%
passengers and 55% ATMs out to 2050, over 2005 levels  for UK airports in total
(based on Government criteria giving the industry special treatment over other
sectors, and guesstimates of aircraft efficiencies yet to be proven).
Edinburgh Airport claims 12.3M passengers and 141,000 ATMs for 2020 – that’s
an uplift of 46% in passengers and 29% in ATMs.
For 2040 they predict 20.5M passengers and 200,600 ATMs – that’s an uplift of
143% in passenger numbers and 84% in ATMs over 2005.
Though the CCC report does not specify how the airports, between themselves,
will arrive at the 60% growth, one wonders how they will all work together to
share the permitted growth between themselves.  They cannot all grow at the rate
Edinburgh hopes for. 
However, the 2050 target of the same emissions as in 2005 was made by the Labour
government, and has yet to be endorsed by the new Coalition government.

When you start to read it the first thing that confronts you is that it is based
firmly on the Air Transport White Paper, and this thread remains in sight throughout
the plan. They appear to make no attempt to move forward from this stance. In
fact they actually quote – “The White Paper is currently the principal policy
document with which future proposals for Edinburgh Airport should be aligned”.

They are proud of the fact that Edinburgh is now the 5th largest airport in the
UK and they desire to solidify this position, if not improve on it, pointing out
that Edinburgh Airport has bucked the recent trend downwards in aviation by registering
“consistent if modest growth” over the past number of years, including a 1% increase
in passenger numbers in 2009.

They are also proud of a report by York Aviation published in 2009 which notes
that it supported 7,710 jobs across Scotland and brought £264.6M to the Scottish
Economy – but it’s not clear to me whether this is the residual figure after the
tourist deficit is factored in.

The Plan itself concentrates on two time periods – that out to 2020, and thence
out to 2040, and it notes that its figures out to 2020 “are well detailed”. Out
to 2020 they claim passenger numbers will grow to 12.3M and movements to 141,300.
These figures are within the CCC overall growth figures for 2005-2050 but are
high considering they are arrived at by 2020. They claim that the figures of 20.5M
passengers and 200,600 movements for 2040 are “more of a guess”, but these figures
are well above the CCC recommendations out to 2050, and beg the question – “Has
the management of Edinburgh Airport taken account of the CCC Report of December
They claim that the current terminal facilities can accommodate up to 13M passengers
– beyond the prediction for 2020.
There is a lot of “very dry” material in the document concerning all the various
laws that the Airport must obey in its day to day running, but perhaps the discussion
of how passengers will arrive at the airport is somewhat key. Edinburgh is getting
trams, and they will run to the airport. However, in Edinburgh the word “tram”
is most definitely of the 4 letter variety. They are “years late” and “way over
budget” – indeed, in order to keep in budget, the managers of the tram line keep
shortening the length of tram line to be laid!
Of interest, perhaps, is that the Chief Executive of the tram company is Richard
Jeffrey who was Manager of Edinburgh Airport at the time of the ATWP. Such is
the uncertainty surrounding the tram line that the plan states that it will be
“operational in a few years” … i.e. predicting a delivery date for the trams is
now “over the horizon”.

When one looks at the predictions for 2040 – an uplift with respect to 2005 of
143% in passenger numbers and 84% in movements, clearly they expect the “average”
aircraft using the airport in the future to be much larger than today. They also
make a claim that international passengers using Edinburgh Airport have grown
80% in the past 4 years, and they expect a further 50% on this figure out to 2020.

There is considerable discussion about a second, parallel, runway to the north,
but that unless the passenger numbers exceed those in their prediction, this runway
will not be required out to 2040.

On the emissions side, they include aircraft emissions up to 3,000 ft and, of
course, commit to trying to reduce these! Despite this, the aircraft emissions,
in their table, dwarf all the other constituents. They then proceed to “doff their
cap” to the CCC by stating that the committee has “forecast that UK Aviation can
grow whilst contributing towards government targets for cutting greenhouse gas

They welcome comments and responses and even include a number of questions for
the reader to respond on.
In summary … not a lot different from previous plans, but pushing dates out a