Airline executive plans new airport in Kent

Updated: 

Airline executive plans new airport in KentPA


A former Cathay Pacific executive, who also led the defunct airline Dan-Air, is hoping to build a new £15 billion airport in the marshy flatlands of North Kent - and the concept of an estuary airport has already won the backing of mayor of London, Boris Johnson.

John Olsen would like the barren site at Cliffe to be transformed into a three-runway airport, capable of handling 100 million passengers a year.

He is frustrated that Heathrow is operating at about 98% capacity with no potential for expansion in the short-term, and believes that the government has the opportunity to rebuild Britain's aviation reputation at the site in Kent.

He is now pushing the plan forward through the Independent Aviation Advisory Group (IAAG).

It is believed that IAAG has already had preliminary talks with potential backers and no taxpayer money would be required.

The 600 acre site is already owned by the government through the Port of London Authority, and is located 30 miles from central London with good transport links to the city.

Olsen believes that the plan could take just 10 years to complete, but he would need support from the government to encourage foreign backers to invest.

The coalition government has so far ruled out building more runways in southeast England and the Department of Transport has previously rejected the north Kent site saying that it would have a negative impact on several nationally and internationally designated environmental areas, the South Thames Estuary, North Kent Marshes and surrounding wetland.

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