Campaigners warn against Heathrow's 'Trojan Horse'

New Terminal 'breaches inquiry limits' say opponents of expansion

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Plans to build a new £1.5bn airport terminal will allow Heathrow to breach the conditions of Terminal Five planning enquiry, campaigners have warned.

The warnings came as BAA unveiled its proposals to replace the existing Terminal 2 and the adjacent Queens Building office block. The airports operator hopes to develop a new complex, to be called Heathrow East, in time for the 2012 Olympics.

The news has not been welcomed by airport campaign groups who have described the plan as a ‘Trojan Horse’ designed to increase capacity at the airport. They claim the project will lead to BAA increasing the number of aircraft flying in and out of Heathrow above the 480,000 limit imposed by the Terminal 5 inquiry in 2001.

Ruth Cadbury, Hounslow Council’s lead member on aviation issues and chair of the Association of London Government’s Olympic Working Group, said she shared campaigners’ concerns about creeping expansion at Heathrow.

She said: “It is clear that Heathrow has reached the limit of its sustainable development. Modernising the airport will bring benefits for both workers and visitors, but expansion is not an option.
We will resist any attempts to break the flight movement limits set at the Terminal 5 inquiry and continue the council’s campaign to secure adequate noise insulation for our schools, homes and public buildings.”

According to BAA, the new terminal will be a similar size to Terminal 5 and is in line with its existing plans to increase Heathrow’s annual passenger capacity from 67 million to 90 million by 2012.

November 21, 2005