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Stansted Airport asks for increase in cap on passenger numbers - to 43 million a year

PUBLISHED: 09:31 22 February 2018 | UPDATED: 09:31 22 February 2018

Stansted Airport (stock image). Picture: STANSTED AIRPORT

Stansted Airport (stock image). Picture: STANSTED AIRPORT

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Stansted Airport has applied to increase the current cap on annual passenger numbers - from 35 million to 43 million passengers a year.

London Stansted Airport chief executie Ken O’Toole. London Stansted Airport chief executie Ken O’Toole.

The application, to Uttlesford District Council, seeks permission to increase the use of its single runway over the next ten years, which could lead to 5,000 new on-site jobs and boost the offering of long haul destinations.

The application also looks to ease pressure on the London airport system by unlocking additional capacity when other airports are full.

Airport bosses say the application demonstrates how the introduction of new quieter aircraft will ensure future passenger growth can be achieved without increasing the number of flights or the noise footprint already permitted.

Since the airport was taken over by Manchester Airports Group five years ago, passenger numbers have risen by nearly ten million - to 26 million a year.

Ken O’Toole, CEO of London Stansted Airport, said: “Today, London Stansted Airport is virtually unrecognisable from the one which MAG acquired almost five years ago to the day.

“During this time, we have spent £150m on upgrading the terminal, added nearly 10 million passengers, more than doubled the number of airlines and developed a short-haul route network which is the best in Europe.

“Looking to the future, demand at Stansted is predicted to remain strong and with constraints on runway capacity in the South-East increasing, we are expecting to reach our current limit on passenger numbers in the early 2020s.

“We are now at the point where it is right to consider the framework for the airport’s growth beyond the current limit.

“From day one, we have been guided by a belief that when our business prospers, the regions and communities in which we operate also prosper and I am proud of the fact that we have managed to deliver our growth in a phased way and worked hard to closely involve our local communities in this journey.

“Over the past six months we have consulted widely on our future growth plans and based on the feedback from these discussions, we’ve made sure our growth can be achieved within current limits on flight numbers and with no increase in the size of the airport’s noise footprint.

“This is good news for local residents.

“In addition, thousands more local jobs will be created and our long-haul connectivity to fast-growing markets like China, USA, India will receive a real boost.

“The recent announcement by Emirates that it will begin daily services to Dubai, in addition to Primera Air launching flights to New York, Boston, Washington and Toronto this year, is a clear statement of what the airport can achieve and we are talking to a range of airlines who are looking to grow their operations at Stansted.

“It is vital for the region that Stansted is able to build on its momentum and the long-term proposals that we have outlined today will enable us to do this and more importantly, provide the local community with confidence that future growth can be delivered in a measured and sustainable way.”

The application will also seek permission for additional airfield infrastructure within the current airfield boundary, comprising two new links to the runway, six additional stands on the mid airfield and three additional stands at the north eastern end of the Airport.

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