The Independent on Sunday has revealed today that top secret plans for a four-runway airport west of Heathrow are soon to be submitted to the Government.
Sites to the west and north-west of Heathrow are being considered, mainly in Oxfordshire and Berkshire.
Sky News reports that their airport would cost an estimated £40bn to £60bn, and would need to be located within 30 minutes of London.
Reporters at the Independent on Sunday claim to have seen documents which confirm that specialist engineers who have worked on major aviation projects in North and Latin America have been asked to consider flat tracts of land that might be suitable.
It is believed that talks with Chinese sovereign wealth funds about funding the airport are already underway and discussions with junior Department for Transport officials are believed to have taken place over the summer.
According to the IoS, Justine Greening, the Secretary of State for Transport is soon to launch a call for evidence on how to increase airport capacity. The Government is struggling to solve the capacity crisis at UK airports, and plans for a third runway at Heathrow or a Thames Estuary airport have caused controversy.
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