London City Airport to pause redevelopment programme in wake of pandemic

PUBLISHED: 12:00 14 August 2020

London City Airport. Picture: Ken Mears

London City Airport. Picture: Ken Mears


London City Airport is to pause its redevelopment programme once the current phase has been completed.

New aircraft stands and passenger facilities, as well as a full-length parallel taxiway, are due to be completed by the end of the year.

But work on subsequent stages, including the terminal extension, will be delayed as the Royal Docks airport waits for demand on its services to return to pre-pandemic levels.

Robert Sinclair, chief executive of London City Airport, said: “Given our location in the heart of London, and the resilient nature of aviation, the airport and our shareholders remain very confident about the long-term prospects of London City and the vital role we can play in re-connecting London and the British economy as we recover from the shock of Covid-19.

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“For the time being, we have taken the decision to focus our attention on delivering the vital additional airfield infrastructure which will provide our existing and prospective airline customers with the potential to bring new generation aircraft to this 
airport in greater numbers, which will be a crucial aspect of how we build a better, more sustainable airport.

“Completing the terminal extension and new east pier very much remains part of our future, and, with the foundations for both in place, we stand ready to take those projects forward when demand returns.”

Work on the upgrade continued throughout much of the coronavirus pandemic when commercial flights from the Royal Docks airport were paused, meaning significant progress was made with certain elements of the scheme. The eight new aircraft stands will be able to accommodate new sustainable planes, while the taxiway will mean the airport can allow up to 45 aircraft movements per hour.

A new immigration facility, featuring 10 new electronic gates, is due to open in September to improve the speed of passenger movement. Since flights resumed in June, the airport has 
welcomed back four airlines and currently offers flights to 15 destinations.

Further airlines and routes are expected to start again in the coming months, with the frequency of some existing routes increasing.

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