18 July 2013
As the debate around airport expansion rages on, engineers are warning the Government that expansion schemes must be considered alongside other transport requirements.
Prof Phil Blythe from the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) said: “There is a definite need to expand airport capacity. However, the debate should be about the best solution to the UK’s transport needs. The considerations should therefore be weighted towards how people get to and from the airport using all transport modes and how it fits into an overall transport strategy.
“Location is of course important; however an issue that seems to be being overlooked is how people will use an expanded or new airport.
“Many plans include a new rail line, which infers that passengers are mostly coming from one direction whereas in practice people travel from all over and without enough off-airport transport infrastructures some of these solutions will not represent an improvement.
“Consideration could, for example, be given to ‘Park and Ride’ train services from regional rail-served hubs to the expanded or newly located airports.”