Bristol Airport expansion recommended for approval

PUBLISHED: 13:00 30 January 2020 | UPDATED: 14:59 30 January 2020

A computer render of what the expanded Bristol Airport might look like. Picture: Bristol Airport

A computer render of what the expanded Bristol Airport might look like. Picture: Bristol Airport

Bristol Airport

Bristol Airport’s controversial expansion plans have been recommended for approval.

Bristol Airport wants to build a larger terminal. Picture: Bristol AirportBristol Airport wants to build a larger terminal. Picture: Bristol Airport

The plans would see the airport expand its facility in order to accommodate 12 million passengers a year, up from its current capacity of 10 million passengers per annum.

A 175-page report, available

on North Somerset Council's website, states the scheme will be approved 'subject to a legal agreement and planning conditions to secure the necessary transport, road and other environmental improvements, plus essential controls over matters such as noise and aircraft movements'.

The plans which were submitted in December 2018 have received almost 8,000 comments including more than 5,500 objections and 2,200 letters of support.

A spokesman for Bristol Airport said it 'welcomed the conclusions reached by the officers report' and 'hoped they would be echoed by members of the planning and regulatory committee'.

Its spokesman added: "A successful, sustainable airport is vital to the continued success of our region.

"These plans to handle an additional two million passengers a year are a practical step to meeting continued demand from passengers and businesses in a way which minimises impacts on our neighbours and the environment.

"Latest figures show nearly nine million passengers used Bristol Airport in 2019, up more than three per cent over the previous year.

"This increase in passengers was achieved with fewer flights, illustrating how the airport is operating more efficiently to decouple environmental impacts from growth."

However, anti-expansion campaigners from Bristol Airport Action Network (BAAN) have said the group is 'deeply saddened' planning officers have' seen fit to approve the airport's expansion plans 'despite the fact we are facing a climate and ecological emergency.'

BAAN's Tarisha Finnegan-Clarke added: "We urge the 27 councillors serving on the planning committee to listen to the concerns of the local people on increased air and noise pollution, traffic congestions and loss of greenbelt habitat as well as the warnings from the UN and the world's climate scientists and vote to reject this ludicrous application.

"We feel the detrimental impact on local communities and the environment far outweigh the benefits put forward by the airport."

A special planning meeting to discuss the proposals will take place, at Weston Town Hall, in Walliscote Grove Road, on February 10 at 6pm.

The building will open at 5pm to allow time for security and bag checks to be undertaken, with items such as food and drink, banners, glue, and loudhorn speakers banned from the meeting.

The meeting will also be live streamed and can be watched above.

The Mercury and Times has contacted Stop Bristol Airport Expansion for comment.

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