Safety Concerns raised over Floating Village plans near London City Airport

Floating village

Floating village - Credit: submitted

A campaigner has slammed Boris Johnson’s scheme for a Floating Village in The Royal Docks claiming it will be built within an airport’s crash zone.

Alan Haughton, who has campaigned against the expansion of London City Airport, claims it would fall within the Department of Transport’s Public safety zone for the Airport. But that has been refuted by the Greater London Authority.

The site which would sit near the London Cable Car will feature homes, hotels, offices, shops, bars and restaurants.

The DoT guidance for Public Safety Zones is not to increase the number of people living, working or congregating in the zone.

Public Safety Zones are areas of land at the ends of runways at the busiest airports, within which development is restricted to control the number of people on the ground at risk of death or injury in the event of an aircraft accident on takeoff or landing.

Mr Haughton said: “This ‘floating village’ would be a village of the damned. Nobody wants to live with the risk of an aircraft coming down on their family, never mind all the other associated risks like noise.

“If Boris Johnson really thinks that the Royal Docks has the potential to become one of the most sought-after addresses in London he needs to use his powers to buy or shut the airport down and unlock the true value of the area.”

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A spokesman for the Greater London Authority said that while the Public Safety Zone does pass through Royal Victoria Dock the proposed development avoids the zone entirely. She also pointed out that other developments such as cable car and and the ExCeL Centre had gone ahead.

She said: “As is standard practice with the many developments on-going in this area, Royal Docks Management Authority would have to consult with City Airport and the aviation authorities to determine if there are any further safety implications.”

A spokesperson for London City Airport said they welcome and actively encourages investment and regeneration in Newham and surrounding areas. She said: “The airport is doing for Newham what the docks did for east London 100 years ago, and looks forward to working with its partners to continue to facilitate inward investment in Newham and the wider east of London.”