The British government is getting set to begin the buikding of a third runway at Heathrow Airport, London.
Transport Secretary Chris Grayling who announced £2.6bn in compensation for residents and noise abatement measures however said the project would only proceed if air quality obligations were met.
“The time for action is now,” he told MPs, insisting the decision was being taken in the national interest and would benefit the whole of the UK – with 15% of new landing slots “facilitating” regional connectivity.
MPs will be asked to vote on the expansion plans in the coming weeks, Airlive.net reports.
Heathrow Airport is the second busiest airport in the world by international passenger traffic; the busiest airport in Europe by passenger traffic, and the sixth busiest airport in the world by total passenger traffic.
The airport which lies 23 km west of Central London, has two parallel east–west runways along with four operational terminals on a site that covers 12.27 square kilometres (4.74 sq mi). Apart from being the primary operaring base for Virgin Atlantic, the airport is also the primary hub for British Airways.
The Airports Commission in 2015, as part of measures to increase the capacity of UK airports, backed a third runway at Heathrow. The government approved the plan in October 2016.