London City Airport considering a Compulsory Purchase of Royal Docks Waterway and land
London City Airport have notified the GLA and the Planning Inspectorate they are considering Compulsory Purchase Order against the Mayor of London to own the nearly 20 hectares of land and Royal Docks Waterway, which it needs for its huge expansion plans. The airport has discussed these plans with the DfT with a view that any CPO be considered at the Planning Inspectorates Public Inquiry into the Mayor’s expansion refusal. That inquiry is due to be heard in the first quarter of 2016. The enquiry could be extended to consider the CPO. The publicly owned land is the responsibility of the London Mayor. The Docks are part of the Blue Ribbon Network protected by the London Plan. A 3-week consultation into the purchase would also have to be carried out. An attempted land grab by London City Airport’s hedge fund owners, GIP, would be unprecedented – if approved -and could see all the Mayor’s Public land assets under attack from private developers. GIP is understood to be keen to sell London City Airport soon, but want planning consent for expansion first, to increase the price to perhaps£1.25 billion. GIP also want a 2nd Gatwick runway. Both would raise the price at sale.
London City Airport considering a Compulsory Purchase of Royal Docks Waterway and land from Mayor of London Boris Johnson
26.6.2015 (Stop City Airport Masterplan)
London City Airport have notified the GLA and the Planning Inspectorate they are considering Compulsory Purchase Order against the Mayor of London Boris Johnson to own the nearly 20 hectares of land and Royal Docks Waterway which it needs for its huge expansion.
The Airport has discussed these plans with the Department of Transport with a view that any CPO be considered at the Planning Inspectorates Public Enquiry into the Mayor’s expansion refusal.
The CPO could make up part of the Planning Inspectorate Public Enquiry into that expansion refusal due to be heard in the first quarter of 2016. The enquiry could be extended to consider the Purchase.
The publicly owned land is the responsibility of the London Mayor. The Docks are part of the Blue Ribbon Network protected by the London Plan. A three week consultation into the purchase would also have to be carried out.
An attempted land grab by London City Airports hedge fund owners, Global Infrastructure Partners would be unprecedented if approved and could see all the Mayor’s Public land assets under attack from private developers.
It is widely believed that London City Airport’s owners GIP are desperate to sell the airport with planning consent, to push the value over £1.25 billion mark. Currently the airport would not fetch much more than the £742m, the price GIP paid in 2006.
Global Infrastructure Partners are also the owners of Gatwick and plan to build a second runway at the airport.
Alan Haughton @stopcityairport said
“The sheer unfettered greed of London City Airport for expansion is undiminished even after the Mayors rightful refusal. To now consider the CPO of public land only shows the depths that these hedge funds will go to to sweat their assets for incredible profits. Global Infrastructure Partners are showing their true colours and residents, politicians and the Davies Commission should take note when considering a second runway at Gatwick.”
The information is from an email from the Mayors office informing them of the plans. No details have been given to the Mayor himself, who is being bypassed.
London City Airport challenges Boris’ decision to block its expansion plans, over ‘noise ghetto’ fears
Boris Johnson blocked London City Airport’s expansion plans in late March, as he said it would create a “noise ghetto” for people living under the flight path. Now, as expected, London City Airport has appealed to the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Greg Clark, against the decision. On March 26th Boris ordered Newham council to reject the plans on the grounds of noise disturbance and because the airport was intended for business rather than leisure. Under the plans, take-offs and landings were expected to increase from 70,000 a year to 111,000,with passenger numbers doubling to 6 million by 2023. It would also be able to accommodate larger planes, (and be more profitable). This coupled with the airport’s plans to use new PBN technology to create a much narrower and concentrated flight corridor over Wanstead, Leytonstone and Leyton had prompted fears that noise could become an issue. The airport says it is appealing because of the jobs it creates, and its economic impact. The decision by Greg Clark could take 5 months.
Newham Council lacks the bravery of Boris to turn down unsuitable developments like City Airport expansion
On Saturday 25th April there was a local celebration party for people living in the Royal Docks area, close to London City Airport. They held their party to celebrate the fact that the London Mayor Boris Johnson had overturned Newham Council’s decision to grant permission for London City airport to expand. Local children have formed a lively choir, and they entertained the assembled guests. People who suffer from the noise from the airport are delighted that Boris has helped them, and opposed the airport’s environmentally-destructive plans that have been backed by the (Labour) Newham council. Though Newham argues that the airport would bring jobs for local people and local economic benefits, it actually provides little of either. No more than about 500 Newham residents are employed directly by the airport. The business passengers don’t linger round the airport, but head off to business meetings in the City or the West End. It was clear at Saturday’s event that the local community regards the airport on their doorstep not as a benefit but as problem which brings noise, air pollution and blight. They feel they might be better off with something else there. Compared to the nearby Excel Centre it provides far fewer jobs or wider economic benefit.
Boris turns down London City Airport expansion plans on noise grounds
Boris Johnstone, the Mayor of London, has refused London City Airport’s plan to expand on noise grounds. In a letter he has instructed Newham Council, who had approved the application, to refuse it. The Mayor says the application does not “adequately mitigate and manage its adverse noise impacts.” Newham’s decision was always dependent on the Mayor’s approval. London City Airport wanted permission to build new taxiways to permit larger planes to use the airport. It also wanted more car parking spaces. The decision will be a bitter blow to the airport as it will now no longer be able to bring in the larger planes it wanted to serve new destinations. John Stewart, chair of HACAN East, which campaigned against the expansion plans, said “The airport is paying the price for being so cavalier about noise. Quite simply, Boris did not believe its claims that it was dealing adequately with noise. We salute his decision”. The decision appears to be final, and it is unclear whether London City Airport can appeal to the Secretary of State. They may do so.