Letter: The answer to Heathrow's terminal trouble lies in the east

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The Independent Online
THERE is a simple solution to the commercial need for Heathrow Airport to expand, a solution that would both spread and at the same time lighten the noise load for people below.

It is to build Heathrow Two, alongside the Thames estuary, perhaps at Rainham Marshes, allowing flight paths over water. The answer lies east.

It would be the same distance from central London and the M25 as the existing Heathrow, but would avoid the addition of Terminal Five and the inevitable demand for a third runway, both massively and rightly opposed.

Mike Roberts, managing director of Heathrow Airport Ltd, has argued against this. But his arguments do not stand up:

1 'Much of the domestic demand for Heathrow comes from the west.' But the very large international transfer demand is to and from the Continent, ie to the east.

2 It 'would increase road congestion in and around London'. No more than the present plans. Central London and the main railway terminals would be as near and the City nearer.

3 'The cost of building would be enormous.' But they already plan for the cost of Terminal Five, even before a third runway. Moreover, the money for widening the M25 and M4 could go towards the road infrastructure for Heathrow Two.

4 'There would inevitably be huge environmental consequences.' But these will be far worse if Heathrow's present plans are allowed through.

Finally, Heathrow Two would help revitalise east London and Docklands.

Pamela Moore


East Twickenham & Riverside Residents Association