A third runway at London’s Heathrow airport is now the government’s official policy and plan after parliament approved the National Aviation Policy Statement (NPS) on 25 June giving the go-ahead for Heathrow’s expansion.
Councillor James Swindlehurst, leader of Slough Borough Council, said: “I am pleased that after nine years parliament has finally given its official and formal backing to Heathrow expansion. Slough is undergoing a period of exciting and unprecedented regeneration – and the decision to expand Heathrow only adds to this; bringing a strategy to increase jobs, improve public transport and enhance local transport infrastructure.
“We are of course aware of the impacts expansion will have on residents closest to the airport and we will continue to work with Heathrow to secure the best possible package of mitigation. We have already been making progress on this and I am certain much more can be achieved in the coming months.”
The council will continue to work with Heathrow to ensure the requirements submitted in its consultation response are implemented.
In its work in the Heathrow Strategic Planning Group on developments at the airport Slough Borough Council has the following priorities:
1. a designated green envelope around Colnbrook and protection for Colnbrook’s historic buildings
2. a step-change in public transport with Slough designated as the western public transport ‘gateway’ for an expanded airport
3. new off-airport facilities should connect with our local community and Slough should be a centre for new airport business
4. HAL must invest in and help grow localised construction skills and Slough residents must be able to access better airport jobs
5. there must be no changes to borough’s boundaries arising as a result of expansion.
Councillor Swindlehurst added: “Expanding Heathrow was the right decision in 2009 and remains the right decision today, not just for the town of Slough, but for the country as a whole.”