There is a strong economic case to close London City Airport. Come again? There may be an environmental case, but a economic one? That is exactly what a new report published on 10th March by the New Economics Foundation claims will happen if London City Airport closes. Royal Docks Revival: Replacing City Airport, commissioned by HACAN East, shows that, if City Airport were shut down, the land freed up would be able to cater for businesses which produced many more jobs and created a lot more income than the airport does.
The stats are convincing. City Airport contributes £750 million each year to the UK economy. The nearby Excel Centre, which occupies roughly the same amount of space as the airport, contributes £1.3 billion. City Airport employs the equivalent of 1,900 full-time jobs. The proposed Silvertown Quays development, just along the road, estimates it will employ 9,000. Even if that turns out to be an overestimate, the difference remains huge. But the report’s emphasis is more about replacing the airport with community-run businesses rather than with more big corporations.
The closure of London City would not add to the pressure to expand Heathrow or any other London Airport. City only accounts for 2.4% of the traffic at the London airports, easily absorbed by the other airports.
The report received a lot of publicity including being featured on the front page of the Financial Times. Here’s some of the other publicity it received:
The Deputy Editor of the Metro (writing in a personal capacity): http://joeltaylorwrites.blogspot.co.uk/2014/04/is-it-time-for-london-city-airport-to.html
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-04-09/london-city-airport-worth-more-as-a-building-site-study-argues.html - Bloomberg which covers financial matters
The link to the full report is below. Below that, the press release. And, below that, a blog by Helen Kersley, the main author of the report.