London City Airport

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London City Airport
London City Airport Logo.svg
London City Airport Zwart.jpg
IATA: LCYICAO: EGLC
Summary
Airport type Public
Owner GIP (75%)
Highstar Capital (25%)
Operator London City Airport Ltd.
Serves London, United Kingdom
Location Silvertown
Elevation AMSL 19 ft / 6 m
Coordinates 51°30′19″N 000°03′19″E / 51.50528°N 0.05528°E / 51.50528; 0.05528Coordinates: 51°30′19″N 000°03′19″E / 51.50528°N 0.05528°E / 51.50528; 0.05528
Website londoncityairport.com
Map
EGLC is located in Greater London
EGLC
EGLC
Location within Greater London
Runways
Direction Length Surface
m ft
09/27 1,508 4,948 Grooved
concrete
Statistics (2013)
Passengers 3,379,753
Passenger change 12–13 Increase12.0%
Aircraft Movements 74,006
Movements change 12–13 Increase4.6%
Sources: UK AIP at NATS[1]
Statistics from the UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]

London City Airport (IATA: LCYICAO: EGLC) is an airport in London. It is located on a former Docklands site in the London Borough of Newham, some 6 NM (11 km; 6.9 mi) east of the City of London and a rather smaller distance east of Canary Wharf. These are the twin centres of London's financial industry, which is a major user of the airport. The airport was developed by the engineering company Mowlem in 1986–87 and is now owned by a consortium comprising AIG Financial Products Corp. and Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP).[1][not in citation given]

London City Airport has a single 1,500-metre (4,900 ft) long runway, and a CAA Public Use Aerodrome Licence (Number P728) that allows flights for the public transport of passengers or for flight training (but only for training necessary for the operation of aircraft at the airport).[3] Only multi-engine, fixed-wing aircraft with special aircraft and aircrew certification to fly 5.5° approaches are allowed to conduct operations at London City Airport.[4]

In 2013, London City served over 3.3 million passengers, a 12% increase compared with 2012 and a record total for the airport. It was the fifth busiest airport in terms of passengers and aircraft movements serving the London area after Heathrow, Gatwick, Stansted and Luton and the 15th busiest in the UK.[2]

History[edit]

Proposal and construction[edit]

The airport was first proposed in 1981 by Reg Ward, who was Chief Executive of the newly formed London Docklands Development Corporation (LDDC) that was responsible for the regeneration of the area. He in turn discussed the proposal with Sir Philip Beck (Chairman of John Mowlem & Co plc) and the idea of an airport for Docklands was born. By November of that year Mowlem and Brymon Airways had submitted an outline proposal to the LDDC for a Docklands STOLport city centre gateway.[5]

On 27 June 1982 Brymon Captain Harry Gee landed a de Havilland Canada Dash 7 aircraft on Heron Quays, in the nearby West India Docks, in order to demonstrate the feasibility of the STOLport project. Later that year the LDDC published a feasibility study, an opinion poll amongst local residents showed a majority in favour of the development of the airport, and Mowlem submitted the application for planning permission.[5]

The terminal buildings

A 63 day planning inquiry started on 6 June 1983. By the middle of the following year, Nicholas Ridley the Secretary of State for Transport had indicated that he was disposed to agree the application, but asked for further details. After the failure of a court case brought by the Greater London Council in 1985, outline planning permission was granted in May of that year, followed by the grant of detailed planning permission in early 1986.[5]

Construction began on the site shortly after permission was granted, with Charles, Prince of Wales laying the foundation stone of the terminal building, designed by R Seifert and Partners, on 2 May 1986. The first aircraft landed on 31 May 1987, with the first commercial services operating from 26 October 1987. Queen Elizabeth II officially opened London City Airport in November of the same year.[5]

Placing a commercial airport into congested airspace (the London Terminal Area (TMA)) was a challenge for the National Air Traffic Services (NATS). In the event, a new airspace authority, Thames Radar, was established to provide a radar control service and provide safe separations for London City arrivals and departures.[citation needed]

Opening and runway extension[edit]

de Havilland Canada Dash 7 making its steep approach to LCY from the west as another London City Airways DHC-7 prepares to depart to Amsterdam in 1988
BAE 146 aircraft takes off from London City Airport

In 1988, the first full year of operation, the airport handled 133,000 passengers. The earliest scheduled flights were operated to and from Plymouth, Paris, Amsterdam and Rotterdam. With a runway of only 1,080 m (3,543 ft) in length, and a slope of the glidepath of 7.5° (for noise abatement reasons), the airport could only be used by a very limited number of aircraft types, principally the Dash 7 and the smaller Dornier Do 228. In 1989, the airport submitted a planning application to extend the runway, allowing the use of a larger number of aircraft types.[5][6]

In 1990 the airport handled 230,000 passengers, but the figures fell drastically after the Gulf War and did not recover until 1993, when 245,000 passengers were carried. By this time the extended runway had been approved and opened (on 5 March 1992). At the same time the glidepath was reduced to 5.7°, still steep for a European airport (the slope of an airport glidepath is normally 2.3°), but sufficient to allow a larger range of aircraft, including the BAe 146 regional jet liner, to serve the airport.[5] But anyway, with a wind direction from the east (of 14 knots or more), approaches must be done from the west and the City of London. Here several tall buildings makes approaches from the west unnecessarily hazardous and may disturb both ILS-system (the localizer and glideslope instrumentation in cockpit). Tall buildings also forces pilots to use "canyon landing" techniques (which among other things calls for the use of the so called speed brakes). Also for approaches from the east, the tall buildings make go-arounds unnecessarily difficult, and due to the short runway late go-arounds are more often called for.

By 1995 passenger numbers reached half a million, and Mowlem sold the airport to Irish businessman Dermot Desmond. Five years later passenger numbers had climbed to 1,580,000, and over 30,000 flights were operated. In 2002 a jet centre catering to corporate aviation was opened, as well as additional aircraft stands at the western end of the apron. In 2003 a new ground holding point was established at the eastern end of the runway, enabling aircraft awaiting takeoff to hold there whilst other aircraft landed.[5]

Further expansion[edit]

On 2 December 2005, London City Airport DLR station opened on a branch of the Docklands Light Railway, providing rail access to the airport for the first time, and providing fast rail links to Canary Wharf and the City of London. By 2006, more than 2.3 million passengers used London City Airport.

In October 2006, the airport was purchased from Dermot Desmond by a consortium comprising insurer AIG Financial Products Corp. and Global Infrastructure Partners (GIP). In the final quarter of 2008 GIP increased its stake in the airport to 75%, the remaining 25% belonging to Highstar Capital.[7]

London City Airport was granted planning permission to construct an extended apron with four additional aircraft parking stands and four new gates to the east of the terminal in 2001. Work is now completed, with the four new stands and gates operational as of 30 May 2008. They are carried on piles above the water of the King George V Dock.[8]

In September 2009, British Airways commenced the first scheduled transatlantic flights from the airport, with a twice daily service to New York City's John F. Kennedy International Airport using a specially configured Airbus A318 aircraft. (Technically, only the eastbound leg is transatlantic, as the plane cannot carry enough fuel due to take off weight limitations because of the short runway at the airport; on the westbound leg, the plane stops in Shannon Airport to refuel, during which time passengers avail of US border preclearance.) The A318 is the smallest airliner to operate transatlantic since BA's corporate predecessor, BOAC, began transatlantic jet flights on 4 October 1958, with the De Havilland Comet 4. The first day of the service, one week after Willie Walsh of British Airways pledged to the UN that aviation would deliver deep cuts in carbon emissions, was disrupted by activists from Plane Stupid and Fight the Flights dressed up in business suits.[9][10][11]

London Olympics 2012[edit]

Before the Games of the XXX Olympiad it was reported that over £7 million (in 2011) was invested in the terminal to extend the Central Search area and adding other improvements.[12] During the Games, though, the airport operated only restricted hours and experienced street block closures (for security), and the low capacity ramp and short runway excluded most long-range arrivals. However, it was the closest airport to Olympic Park, with normal scheduled travel by road of 15 min.[13]

2030 vision[edit]

In early 2013 work is expected to start on a £15m investment programme to refurbish the western pier with new departure gates and improved lounges and to redevelop the international arrivals hall and baggage handling areas.[14] The airport also has produced a master plan outlining their vision for growth up to 2030. The plan shows an expansion of the airport to a maximum capacity of 8 million passengers per annum, without the addition of a second runway, or significant expansion of the airport boundaries.[15]

Operations[edit]

London City Airport runway with Canary Wharf in the background.

Due to the airport's proximity to Central London, it has stringent rules imposed to limit the noise impact from aircraft operations. This, together with the physical dimensions of the 1,508 m (4,948 ft) long runway and the steep glideslope, limits the aircraft types that can use London City Airport.

Mid-range airliners seen at London City include the ATR 42 (both −300 and −500 variants), ATR 72, Airbus A318, DHC Dash 8, BAe 146/Avro RJ, Dornier 328, Embraer ERJ 135, Embraer 170/175,[16] Embraer 190/195 and Fokker 50. On 30 January 2009, trials were completed successfully with the ATR 72–500, leading to its approval for use at the airport.[17] The Embraer 190SR underwent trials from 28 March 2009, and thereafter gained approval.[17] The Fokker F70, BAe Jetstream 41, Saab 340 and Saab 2000 also have approval for scheduled operations at the airport. A number of airlines including Swiss and Odyssey have ordered the Bombardier CS100 with the intention of operating it from London City once delivered and approved.[18][19]

Corporate aircraft such as the Beechcraft Super King Air, Cessna CitationJet series, Hawker 400, Hawker 800, Piaggio Avanti and variants of the Dassault Falcon business jets are increasingly common. The airport is not available for use by single-engine aircraft or helicopters; recreational flights and single-pilot operations are also not permitted.[3]

The size and layout of the airport and overall complexity caused by the lack of taxiways mean that the airport gets very busy during peak hours. The air traffic controllers have to deal with over 38 flights an hour on a runway requiring a lengthy backtrack for each aircraft needing to depart from runway 27 or land on runway 09.

Operations are restricted to 06:30 to 22:30 Monday to Friday, 06:30 to 13:00 on Saturdays and 12:30 to 22:30 on Sundays. These restrictions are related to noise.[1]

The size of the airport, constrained by the water-filled Royal Albert and King George V docks to the north and south respectively, means that there are no covered maintenance facilities for aircraft.

Terminal[edit]

London City Airport is small compared with the other five London international airports. Owing to its proximity to London's Docklands and financial district its main users are business travellers, but the number of leisure destinations served (like Palma de Mallorca or Chambéry) has increased in recent years. Inside the terminal there are 17 check-in desks plus self-service kiosks for Air France, British Airways, Lufthansa, Luxair and Swiss European Air Lines. There are fifteen gates at the Airport. London City Airport is also the closest private jet centre to central London.

London City Airport has free Wi-Fi for all its passengers.[20] It is available throughout the terminal area and the Business Centre (located in City Aviation House).

London City is at its busiest during the winter months, when a number of airlines, most notably British Airways, Swiss and CityJet, fly to ski resort gateway destinations. Zürich, Geneva and Milan are among the destinations popular among winter sports enthusiasts.[21]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

BA CityFlyer Embraer 170 at London City Airport
CityJet Avro RJ85 at London City Airport
Sky Work Airlines Dornier 328 at London City Airport
Airlines Destinations
Alitalia
operated by Alitalia CityLiner
Milan–Linate, Rome–Fiumicino
Blue Islands Jersey
British Airways
operated by British Airways Limited
New York–JFK
British Airways
operated by BA CityFlyer
Aberdeen (ends 24 October 2014), Amsterdam, Barcelona, Dublin (begins 26 October 2014),[22] Düsseldorf,[23] Edinburgh, Florence, Frankfurt, Glasgow, Granada, Ibiza, Madrid, Málaga, Palma de Mallorca, Stockholm–Arlanda (ends 24 October 2014), Zurich
Seasonal: Angers, Chambéry, Faro, Geneva, Menorca, Nice, Quimper, Venice–Marco Polo
British Airways
operated by Eastern Airways for BA CityFlyer
Isle of Man, Rotterdam
British Airways
operated by Sun Air of Scandinavia
Billund
CityJet Amsterdam, Antwerp, Deauville, Dresden (ends 24 October 2014),[24] Dublin, Florence, Nantes, Paris–Orly, Rotterdam
Seasonal: Avignon, Brest, Brive, Toulon–Hyères
Flybe Belfast-City (begins 27 October 2014), Dublin (begins 27 October 2014), Edinburgh (begins 27 October 2014), Exeter (begins 27 October 2014), Inverness (begins 27 October 2014)[25]
Lufthansa Regional
operated by Lufthansa CityLine
Frankfurt
Luxair Luxembourg
Sky Work Airlines Bern (ends 25 October 2014)[26]
Swiss International Air Lines
operated by Swiss European Air Lines
Basel/Mulhouse, Geneva, Zurich

Statistics[edit]

Passenger numbers at London City Airport saw rapid growth between 2003 and 2008, doubling from around 1.5 million per year to over 3 million during that period. Totals declined during 2009 and 2010, but have since recovered and in 2013 nearly 3.4 million passengers passed through London City, a record total for the airport.[2]

Number of
passengers[2]
Number of
movements[27]
London City Airport passenger totals
1997-2013 (millions)
1997 1,161,116 34,605
1998 1,360,187 39,078
1999 1,385,965 44,376
2000 1,583,843 52,643
2001 1,618,833 57,361
2002 1,602,335 56,291
2003 1,470,576 52,856
2004 1,674,807 61,029
2005 1,996,397 71,105
2006 2,358,184 79,436
2007 2,912,123 91,177
2008 3,260,236 94,516
2009 2,796,890 76,861
2010 2,780,582 68,640
2011 2,992,847 68,792
2012 3,016,664 70,781
2013 3,379,753 74,006
Source: UK Civil Aviation Authority[2]
Busiest Routes to and from London City Airport (2013)
Rank Airport Passengers handled  % Change 2012 / 13
1 Netherlands Amsterdam 407,611 Increase 5.2
2 Switzerland Zürich 396,509 Increase 0.9
3 United Kingdom Edinburgh 333,859 Increase 3.4
4 Germany Frankfurt 210,834 Increase 9.9
5 Switzerland Geneva 188,776 Decrease 3.3
6 Luxembourg Luxembourg 180,169 Increase 10.2
7 United Kingdom Glasgow–International 175,373 Increase 10.8
8 Republic of Ireland Dublin 169,585 Increase 4.6
9 Netherlands Rotterdam 112,291 Decrease 0.5
10 Italy Milan–Linate 109,589 Increase 98.2
11 France Paris–Orly 95,396 Increase 7.1
12 Spain Madrid 75,269 Increase 12.4
13 Switzerland Basel–Mulhouse 75,013 Increase 76.6
14 United Kingdom Aberdeen 73,150 Increase 363.2
15 Belgium Antwerp 70,991 Decrease 1.7
16 Germany Nuremberg 55,428 Increase 0.0
17 Sweden Stockholm–Arlanda 53,351 Increase 2.8
18 Spain Ibiza 51,747 Increase 46.1
19 Isle of Man Isle of Man 45,149 Increase 17.3
20 Italy Florence 40,209 Increase 24.7
Source: UK Civil Aviation Authority[28]

Ground transportation[edit]

London City Airport DLR station

London City Airport is linked to London's new financial district at Canary Wharf, to the traditional financial district of the City of London, and to Stratford International station adjacent to the Olympic Park, via the Docklands Light Railway, that offers interchanges with London Underground, London Overground and Southeastern Trains. London City Airport DLR station adjoins the terminal building, with enclosed access to and from the elevated platforms.

The airport is served by London Buses services 473 and 474 running to local East London destinations. However, the express shuttle buses, which formerly ran to various destinations, were withdrawn after the DLR line was built. The airport has both a short-term and a long-term car park, both within walking distance of the terminal and a taxi rank outside the terminal door.

Future of the airport[edit]

Take-off from London City Airport as seen from a Fokker 50

In response to the UK government white paper The Future of Air Transport, the airport operators have produced a master plan outlining their vision for growth up to 2030. The plan was subject to public consultation during spring 2006, and has been republished incorporating comments from this consultation. The master plan shows a phased expansion of the airport, giving the capability of handling 8 million passengers per annum by 2030. It does not propose the addition of a second runway, or significant expansion of the airport boundaries.[15]

Phase 1 of this development would be undertaken by 2015. It would include the in-progress construction of the eastern apron extension and provision of a finger pier to the south of this apron to provide passenger access to aircraft using the new parking stands. The terminal building would also be extended to use the triangle of land between it and the railway station. The existing jet centre serving corporate aviation would be extended, a new hangar built to allow aircraft maintenance, and a replacement fire station provided.[29]

Phases 2 and 3 would be undertaken between 2015 and 2030. Further aircraft parking stands would be built to the east of the terminal, and a taxiway would be constructed alongside and to the south of the runway, to avoid the need for aircraft to back-track on the runway. Both these developments would involve further reduction in the water area of the King George V Dock. The existing fuel farm would be relocated to a site at the east of the airport, where it could be supplied by barge, and linked to a hydrant based supply system, thus eliminating both road tanker deliveries and on-airport fuel bowser movements. The existing surface car park would be replaced by a multi-storey car park, allowing extension of the vehicle drop-off and pick up area. The jet centre and hangar facilities would be further extended. Finally the existing terminal building would be replaced.[29]

In line with phase 1 of the master plan, London City Airport made a planning application to the London Borough of Newham in August 2007. This would allow it to increase the number of flights per year from 80,000 to 120,000 by 2010.[30] In July 2008, the Planning Officer for Newham Council produced a report on the Planning Application, recommending that planning permission be granted.[31] The decision was deferred by the Council's Development Control Committee at their meeting 30 July 2008, following a request from Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, that the decision be delayed until after a study by the National Air Traffic Services (NATS) has been published.[32]

Over 10,000 letters were sent to local residents of which 1,109 replied, 801 with objections and 308 in support.[31] The 801 objections mainly concerned increase in noise, increase in air pollution, surface transport, socio-economics and regeneration. The 308 supporters mainly concerned the reduction of air pollution, an alternative London and 2012 Olympic gateway, additional jobs, and benefiting to the local economy.[31] The residents campaign group HACAN East (formerly Fight the Flights) is opposed to expansion due to noise and pollution issues.[32]

On 29 September 2009, Fight the Flights took Newham Council to court in order to challenge their decision to allow a 50% increase from 76,000 to 120,000 flights.[33] On 20 January 2010, the challenge was dismissed, and a deadline of 14 days to appeal was set.[34]

In April 2014 the New Economics Foundation proposed that the airport should be closed and the land given over to housing. The NEF report claimed that considering the large land area the airport occupies, it generates little profit and creates a lot of pollution.[35]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c "London/City – EGLC". Nats-uk.ead-it.com. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "UK Annual Airport Statistics". CAA. Retrieved 2014-04-01. 
  3. ^ a b "The UK Integrated Aeronautical Information Package (IAIP) – London/City (EGLC)". Nats-uk.ead-it.com. Retrieved 2013-08-29. 
  4. ^ "Certification requirements for London City Airport" (PDF). Isle of Man Aircraft Registry. Retrieved 22 January 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g "Airport History". London City Airport Consultative Committee. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  6. ^ "Constructing the Airport". London City Airport Consultative Committee. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  7. ^ London City Airport: Corporate Information Archived 22 August 2010 at the Wayback Machine
  8. ^ "London City Airport Master Plan" (PDF). London City Airport. November 2006. p. 13. Archived from the original on 27 February 2008. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  9. ^ "BA aims to launch London City–JFK A318 service in Oct". Flightglobal.com. 2009-05-27. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  10. ^ "Can 'son of Concorde' succeed?". The Independent (UK). 26 September 2009. Retrieved 26 September 2009. 
  11. ^ "Green groups slam BA over new business class-only flights". The Guardian. 
  12. ^ "London City Airport expects Olympics boost - Jobs, Recruitment, Travel Jobs, HR Jobs, Travel Agent Jobs, Business Travel Jobs and Jobs in Travel via C&M Recruitment Consultancy". Candm.co.uk. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  13. ^ > Jason Hayward (2012-01-16). "6 Important Tips for Successful 2012 London Olympic Games Planning | Universal® Operational Insight Blog". Universalweather.com. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  14. ^ "London City Airport", Airliner World, February 2013: 7 
  15. ^ a b "London City Airport Master Plan". London City Airport. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  16. ^ "ERJ 170 Approved for LCY". Aviation Today. 22 June 2007. Retrieved 3 January 2008. 
  17. ^ a b Kaminski-Morrow, David (10 February 2009). "Authorities clear ATR 72 for London City operations". Flightglobal. Retrieved 15 April 2010. 
  18. ^ Ghim-Lay Yeo (June 2, 2013). "Bombardier appears to name Odyssey as CSeries customer". Flightglobal. 
  19. ^ Ghim-Lay Yeo (June 17, 2013). "Odyssey confirmed as CSeries customer". Flightglobal. 
  20. ^ "Free Wireless Internet access". Web.archive.org. 2009-04-28. Archived from the original on 2009-04-28. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  21. ^ "History of London City Airport". Flightsnetwork.co.uk. Retrieved 2012-04-07. 
  22. ^ http://www.dublinairport.com/gns/at-the-airport/latest-news/14-06-26/British_Airways_To_Fly_To_London_City_From_October.aspx
  23. ^ "BA to launch new London City routes". Business Traveller. 2013-11-26. Retrieved 2014-03-07. 
  24. ^ http://centreforaviation.com/analysis/cityjets-new-owner-intro-aviation-to-acquire-new-fleet-rebrand-move-ho-to-dublin-peter-oncken-176467
  25. ^ http://www.londoncityairport.com/News/ReadArticle/flybe_operates_from_london_city_airport
  26. ^ http://www.flyskywork.com/en/company/press/press-releases/winter-schedule-2015
  27. ^ Number of movements represents total aircraft takeoffs and landings during that year.
  28. ^ "UK Airport Statistics: 2013 – annual | Aviation Intelligence | About the CAA". Caa.co.uk. Retrieved 2014-03-26. 
  29. ^ a b "London City Airport Master Plan" (PDF). London City Airport. November 2006. pp. 24–26. Archived from the original on 27 February 2008. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  30. ^ "London City Airport Planning Application". London City Airport. Retrieved 2 January 2008. 
  31. ^ a b c "Planning Officer's report on Planning Application" (PDF). London Borough of Newham. Retrieved 2 July 2008. 
  32. ^ a b "City flights decision is delayed". BBC. 30 July 2008. Retrieved 12 August 2008. 
  33. ^ "Council sued on City flights rise". BBC. 29 September 2009. Retrieved 29 September 2009. 
  34. ^ "Residents lose City Airport flights court battle". BBC News. 20 January 2011. 
  35. ^ "BBC News - London City Airport 'should close', think tank says". BBC Online. 10 April 2014. Retrieved 10 April 2014. 

External links[edit]

Media related to London City Airport at Wikimedia Commons