03:51PM, Tuesday 30 January 2018
Heathrow airport’s latest non statutory consultations ask for your preferences on its new North West Runway proposals and related flight operations.
The nearest of 40 information drop in sessions will start on Wednesday, January 31 at Ascot Racecourse, followed by Windsor Youth Centre (off Alma Road) on Friday, February 2 and Sportsable in Maidenhead on Thursday, February 8 (all midday to 8 pm) plus Wraysbury Village Hall on Saturday, March 3, from 10am to 4 pm.
Responses close at 11.55pm on March 29 and will be used to support the Development Consent Order (DCO) submission for final approval if the principle of another runway is agreed by MPs in Parliament in the coming months.
These dates make it very important to state your views and concerns.
The overstated world class mitigations will only give noise insulation assistance in the very noisiest places and noise free periods will be halved to only four hours per day. There are other glaring omissions.
How will 180,000 additional airport and related business employees and their families be housed – plus the residents of the 3,500 houses in the communities which will be erased for the runway?
An Airports Commission report stated 70,400 more houses would be needed for the new employees.
The additional employees and their families will add to school and health facility stresses, road and rail congestion.
The hollow promise of 50 to 60 per cent of passengers and employees travelling by bus or train is unrealistic as seldom more than 30 per cent use public transport.
How on earth can the depleted construction industry build facilities for 54 per cent more flights and their passengers, replace hotels, refugee resettlement centres and buried services along the demolished Bath Road, plus the high tech Grundon Energy from Waste facility at the same time as the millions of new homes promised by the Government?
Will Heathrow pay for all of its part of the above, road and rail alterations and upgrades including widening the M25 and the M4 Chiswick flyover which are already gridlocked for hours every day, plus the six-lane road tunnel beyond the M4 near the Hammersmith flyover which Highways England say will be necessary?
At present Heathrow says we will have to pay up to £20billion out of our taxes!
There is a ridiculous proposal to take gravel from Old Windsor’s Ham Island over its narrow bridge and village roads to raise the runway over the M25 and afterwards fill the pit with waste material.
This suggests relocating or compensating nearly 50 riverside households and the large sewage works which serves the whole Windsor area has not been considered – and casts serious doubts on the whole consultation.
The disputed claim of a circa £60billion financial benefit to the nation is spread over 60 years and does not account for the enormous counter costs above and disruption to many businesses and millions of people.
What faith can be put in any promise a fourth runway would never be sought after previous ones that T4 would be the last and another runway would never be needed when T5 was allowed?
All of this emphasises Heathrow is not the right place for increased airport facilities. A North Midlands location would be a far better location.
It is absolutely essential respondents state on consultation form whether they support or oppose the expansion with their main reasons.
The preferences which you might give should be expressly stated as being relevant only in the unfortunate event of the proposal being approved, to avoid being added to the number of supporters.
Cllr Malcolm Beer
Old Windsor Residents Association
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