Gatwick Airport to spend £1.1bn on expansion
London’s Gatwick airport said it plans to spend £1.1bn on expanding its capacity by 7m passengers within the next five years.
According to a statement issued by the airport on Wednesday, most of the money will go to lengthening one of the piers at the North Terminal to accommodate more aeroplanes.
The airport expects passenger numbers to reach 53m by 2023, up from 47m in 2017.
Gatwick decided to boost its capacity after losing to London Heathrow airport in the government contest to win approval for the construction of a further runway.
The departure lounge in Gatwick's northern site is also set to be enlarged and will trial biometric auto-boarding technology. In the southern area there will be a new domestic arrivals hall, a baggage claim area and extended hotels and parking.
Gatwick’s chief executive, Stewart Wingate, said: “Gatwick is a major piece of national infrastructure, and our continued growth and ability to attract long-haul airlines is vital for the health of the UK economy, particularly in a post-Brexit world. We are exploring ways to grow our capacity, including developing new systems and processes to handle more passengers, and considering how we use all our existing infrastructure in the future."
Addressing noise concerns he pointed to new quieter aircraft incoming this year with the introduction of A321s by Easyjet.,
"We are developing our infrastructure now, by reconfiguring airfield stands and planning for the construction of a major extension to our Pier 6 facility. These initiatives will support this next phase of growth."