Daily Mail: "Boris to put Stansted back on the agenda for airport expansion"

Link to Daily Mail

"Stansted could be transformed into a four-runway international super-airport in a plan that would solve Britain's aviation problems for up to 500 years, it has emerged today.

"Boris Johnson is to suggest expanding the Essex airport into one of the world's biggest as he fights tooth and nail to block a third runway at Heathrow.

"Mr Johnson's first choice has always been to build his £50billion 'Boris Island' airport in the Thames estuary but Stansted now appears to be considered a credible alternative."


Eveining Standard: "Unveiled: £40bn hub airport on new island in Channel"

Link to web site

"Striking plans for a £40 billion superhub airport in the Channel were today unveiled by a leading firm of engineers.

"The four-runway airport could operate 24 hours a day because aircraft would take off and land over water, minimising disruption to mainland residents.

"The breathtaking design by maritime engineers Beckett Rankine and unveiled in the Standard shows how the 10 square-mile site would be reclaimed from sandbanks."


Friends of Regent's Canal: "Crossrail lorry movement 'stitch up'"

Link to web site report (around March 2012)

"Lorries will be streaming night and day through West London delivering thousands of concrete tunnel lining sections to the canalside Crossrail tunnel portal at Westbourne Park near Paddington. The linings are being cast at the Old Oak Common Railway Depot next to the Grand Union Canal only 2 miles away near Willesden Junction, reports Del Brenner.

Link to Ham & High
"Thousands of tunnel sections are already being stockpiled at the rail depot beside the canal as this recent photo taken from the canal towpath shows.

"London Assembly Member Murad Qureshi, who is chair of the GLA London Waterways Commission, makes it clear in his blog The Qureshi Report that he strongly disapproves of the use of lorries to transport the tunnel linings , when using the canal would clearly be of great advantage and most practical." 

Link to response from Crossrail,
and technical report.


Evening Standard: "Boris airport could be ‘superhub’ at Stansted"

Link to web site

"Boris Johnson will include Stansted in a £3 million feasibility study into a new superhub airport in the South-East.

"The Mayor’s decision to look at expanding the Essex airport into a four-runway hub suggests it is now a serious contender.

"... It would be a fraction of the cost of a new airport — a minimum of £60 billion — in either the inner or outer Thames estuary, and rail links are already in place."


BBC: "Cameras on drone aircraft trigger calls for legislation"

Link to BBC web site

"As drone cameras produce ever-more spectacular footage, there are concerns the remote-controlled mini-aircraft might be used to invade people's privacy.

"The BBC's Colin Paterson has been taking a look at some of the images - and finding out why there are calls for legislation."


The Independent on Sunday: "Go slow for High Speed Two"

Link to web site

"The Government is looking to slice around 100km per hour off the top speed of the controversial High Speed Two (HS2) rail connection proposed between London and Birmingham.

"Officials at the Department for Transport are understood to have asked the state-owned body overseeing HS2, if it agrees with criticisms that Government had focused too much on the need for speed."


LB of Hammersmith & Fulham Core Strategy (adopted Oct 2011): Park Royal Opportunity Area

Link to Hammersmith & Fulham web site

"The long term vision for this area is to transform it with substantial mixed-use regeneration, made possible principally by the projected HS2 rail line and Crossrail.

"This could provide thousands of homes, jobs and supporting facilities in a high quality environment focused on the Grand Union Canal, and securing future growth for London in a very sustainable way."


Evening Standard: "Boris Johnson: my vision of an airport city on Thames (inspired by India)"

Link to web site

"Boris Johnson today set out his vision to build an “aerotropolis” around a new terminal in the Thames Estuary.

"A town of about 20,000 people could spring up to the east of London, based around a four-runway hub airport. 

"It would have four or five 'anchor' developments such as a hospital, university campus, a major business or exhibition centre to create thousands of jobs. A social infrastructure including homes, schools, shops, parks and a transport network would be a key part of the plan."


The Guardian: "Earls Court: Kensington and Chelsea's go ahead can't hide the contradictions"

Link to web site

"Much of the formal foundation is now in place for Sir Terry Farrell's high rise 'villages' to soar from the rubble of the exhibition centres and, across the borough border, of the West Kensington and Gibbs Green housing estates, whose residents oppose demolition by a margin of at least three to one, according to the council's own assessment of responses to its consultation, though you'd never guess that from this finely-spun press release, which also pretends that people living in the surrounding area are firmly in support.

"The truth is that only a minute percentage of them answered the council's call for their views, whereas the response from the secure council tenants, housing association tenants, leaseholders and freeholders who live on the estates was impressive."


Evening Standard: " Kensington and Chelsea planners give go-ahead for demolition of Earls Court Exhibition Centre"

Link to Evening Standard

"A plan to demolish Earls Court Exhibition Centre and replace it with thousands of new homes has been approved.

"Developers say they want to turn the 77-acre site into a 'new London district' by creating four 'urban villages' and a '21st century high street'.

"The plans are based on designs by architect Sir Terry Farrell and would create 7,500 houses and 12,000 permanent full-time jobs, according to developers Capital Counties Properties PLC (Capco)."


The Observer: "Rothschilds unite with National Trust to fight plans for high speed rail link"

Link to web site

"As two of Britain's finest stately homes, they have played host to royalty and presidents, and their sumptuous facades have provided backdrops to film and television costume dramas.

"But now Waddesdon Manor and Hartwell House in Buckinghamshire are to take centre stage in a saga of their own, as their powerful occupants combine to challenge the government over its plans for HS2, the high speed train line between London and Birmingham.

"In a move that threatens to become a major test of the government's claims that it will take extensive measures to minimise the impact of line, the National Trust, whichs owns Hartwell, and the Waddesdon estate, home to the financier Lord Rothschild, is to submit detailed plans for the construction of a 7km 'green corridor' running past the properties and the town of Aylesbury."


LB of Hammersmith & Fulham and Old Oak Housing Association: Community Computer Access

"Do you know whether you will be affected by the changes to Housing Benefit and the benefits system that are coming next year?
If you would like to see who will be affected
Or to use a benefit calculator to check what your income will be
Or contact agencies who can help you with your finances
Or begin looking for a new property with lower rent
Why not come to the centre?
The computer room is now open on Tuesday afternoons from 1-3pm for the local community to access the internet, for information or advice around housing, benefits or finances. Be prepared for April 2013."


Crossrail's Open House

"We recently opened the doors of our Bond Street and Canary Wharf station work sites and the Tunnelling and Underground Construction Academy (TUCA) to the public, as part of the Open House London weekend.

"This exciting annual event showcases London’s unique architecture and allows people to visit buildings and spaces that are not generally open to the public.

"Visitors to the Bond Street and Canary Wharf station sites enjoyed engineer-led tours and bird’s eye views of the works. TUCA visitors learned how the striking contemporary design overcame site constraints, how money was saved during construction and an 'Excellent' sustainability rating was achieved.

"Over 700 people visited Crossrail sites over the Open House weekend.

"The Paddington station site also recently held an open day for those interested in careers in construction. The Open Doors event provided a unique opportunity for would be workers to witness first-hand the scale and complexity of the job. Open Doors hopes that events such as this will help to attract a wider, more diverse range of talent into the construction sector."


Daily Telegraph: " 'Boris Island' fails to gain support among MPs"

Link to Daily Telegraph

"The proposed airport, designed by Sir Norman Foster and nicknamed 'Boris Island', could provide four new runways to meet demand for extra air capacity in the capital.

"But only 16 per cent of MPs support the plans, according to polling by Ipsos Mori. Some 59 per cent opposed the plans, of whom 35 per cent - more than a third - said they were 'strongly opposed'. Eleven per cent of the MPs questioned refused to give their view.

"According to research released in September, the airport could be built within 14 years, only two years longer than would be needed to build a third runway at Heathrow.

"Mr Johnson has said said that with 'political will', the airport could be built in six years, with the costs in part met by private finance."


Hammersmith & Fulham: "Work with us to maximise HS2 potential"

Link to PDF: Vision for Park Royal City International

Thursday November 1, 2012

Billions of pounds worth of economic growth would be generated if Whitehall departments worked more closely with local authorities on major infrastructure projects, according to three leading London boroughs.

Multi-billion pound schemes – like High Speed 2 (HS2) – are often planned in Government ‘silos’ limiting their potential, according to the Leaders of Hammersmith & Fulham (H&F), Westminster (WCC) and the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea (RBKC).

The £32billion rapid rail link between London and Birmingham will see a new generation of high speed trains, running at speeds of up to 250mph, stopping at a major new interchange station just north of Wormwood Scrubs. [That cost is to Manchester and Leeds, not just Birmingham.]

Dubbed Park Royal City International, the interchange will be the final stop before the trains terminate at Euston. The Government has recognised the station’s vital role in taking pressure off busy central London terminals – which could not cope with 13,000 extra passengers an hour.

Around a third of all HS2 passengers are expected to transfer at Park Royal City International onto the station’s unrivalled rail and road connections.

However, there are currently no firm HS2 plans for ‘over-site’ development at the station and the local councils argue that HS2 would be capable of delivering many more new jobs and homes than currently envisaged if Government departments worked more closely with them.

If the railway design was optimised to facilitate development above and around the HS2 hub station, as well as the Kensal Green Crossrail station, the area could deliver 21,000 new homes and 196,000 new jobs. A master plan from world renowned architect Sir Terry Farrell shows how the area could become the largest regeneration project the capital has ever seen.

The additional development would be worth £74billion and up to twenty-five per cent of London’s growth over the next thirty years could be accommodated on the site, according to the ‘Tri-borough’ councils.

“A radical shift is needed in the way Whitehall interacts with councils if we are going to maximise the potential of major infrastructure projects to generate growth,” says Cllr Nicholas Botterill, H&F Council Leader. “HS2 is not just a railway line it has huge potential to be the catalyst that creates large numbers of new homes and jobs along the route. But Government departments need to work more closely with local authorities so that we rewire services around people and places rather than Government silos.”

Cllr Sir Merrick Cockell, the Leader of RBKC, added: “There is getting on for billion pounds of value locked up in the Kensal site, to unlock it we need a Crossrail station. It is not always easy to get transport specialists to see the economic case we need Central Government to step back and see the big picture and to work with local authorities to realise the potential of these sites.”

The councils argue that the current silo approach stifles the potential of major infrastructure schemes and provides very little opportunity to understand the rationale behind the decision making process, and even less scope for those outside the silo to influence decisions. Timetables are solely based on the silo’s needs and plans to create wider benefits, such as new homes and community facilities, are too often regarded as costs that risk delays.

Around half of working age adults within 1.2miles of the hub station are unemployed and parts of the area are in the bottom 1% most deprived nationally.

Cllr Botterill continues: “Maximising regeneration and development on the back of major infrastructure projects needs to be a cross-government responsibility. In the case of the HS2 that means central Government needs to work with us to ensure that the configuration of the stations and depots at Park Royal City International and Kensal support regeneration.

“If government departments heed our advice and start working more closely with us vast swathes of derelict industrial land in one of London’s poorest areas could be transformed.

“HS2 has the potential to unleash the creation of a new business hub bigger than Canary Wharf but only if the Whitehall bureaucrats start seeing this as a regeneration project, which needs local input and expertise, rather than just a railway project.”

More from The Guardian: "Earls Court project: 'They actually believe their own bullshit'."

Link to The Guardian - again

"Regular readers will know the vital facts: the planned Earls Court redevelopment project is one of the capital's largest, with its backers promising 7,500 new homes, 6,000 of them for market sale, and economic rejuvenation for 77 acres of inner West London and its surrounding territory; those supporters include the Conservative-run boroughs of Hammersmith and Fulham (H&F), Kensington and Chelsea (K&C), their developer partner Capco and Conservative London mayor Boris Johnson, who seems extremely unlikely to use his powers to impede the scheme.

"... Sally Taylor and Diana Belshaw are the respective chairs of the tenants and residents associations (TRAs) of the two demolition-threatened estates, the West Kensington and the smaller, adjoining Gibbs Green. Both TRAs are strongly against the demolition of the estates, and favours instead taking community-led ownership of them. When I visited Sally and Diana at Sally's flat on Monday evening, I began by simply asking them to tell me why they think the Earls Court project is a bad idea."


Place West London: "Old Oak opportunity four times that of Olympics"

"The massive regeneration opportunity that is Old Oak Common – christened “Park Royal City” by LB Hammersmith & Fulham – was laid out before delegates at Place West London in 2012.

"Sir Terry Farrell led off, talking with enthusiasm about his masterplan for the area – some 750ha of generally brownfield land – which could deliver 100,000 jobs and 19,000 new homes.

"The Old Oak opportunity area is much bigger than either Canary Wharf, at 11.5ha, or the Olympic Park, at 200ha, and has a lot going for it. The proposed interchange between HS2 and Crossrail offers much more than just an interchange. The chance to create a whole new district of London above ground is one too large to ignore, he said.

"HS2′s present plans just include a sealed interchange between the two lines, without even a connection to the neighbouring London Overground or Underground stations. There was general agreement on [the need for these connections?] ... among speakers, including Colin Wilson of the GLA, Mike Cummings of SEGRO and Nick Botterill, Leader of LB Hammersmith & Fulham.

"Wilson showed the GLA’s thinking in the current draft of their Opportunity Area Planning Framework, with a phased development of the area up to and beyond 2031. The green assets of the area featured heavily – Wormwood Scrubs and Kensal Green Cemetary being two of the largest green sapces in London.

"He was at pains to say that the development planned was mainly residential and commercial office/industrial. There was no real need for significant retail elements with Westfield a couple of minutes away on the West London Line.

"Mike Cummings made the point that this proposed development was not, as the Olympic Park had been, on derelict land far from any major centres of employment. With Park Roylal right next door, where over 60,000 people work already, it was important that any development enhanced this economic dynamo’s capacity to deliver economic growth and employment. He appealed for plans to provide ways of easing road congestion for the whole area.

"Wilson and Botterill both thought that the project was big enough to benefit from a Mayoral Development Corporation, as the Olympic Legacy does, and this would look like a significant possibility if the argument over the station can be won with HS2, and with the Goverment, to create a station equal in passenger throughput to Waterloo, and immediately one of the five biggest in the UK.

"Nick Botterill also pointed to the proposed direct link to HS1, and relished that this would bring 'passport control in to Hammersmith & Fulham for the first time'. [Very unlikely, though. Use the proposed Euston - St Pancras travellator, instead.]
"Old Oak is another example, alongside the Battersea Northern Line Extension, of how infrastructure investment can provide the opportunity for significant economic development, and of the value that such investment can release for the future of west London, and indeed the whole city." [So let's not screw it up, like at Brent Cross. Rely on transparency throughout!]

The Guardian: "Earls Court project: revisiting that 'social engineering' claim"

Link to Dave Hill, The Guardian

"The housing and redevelopment policies of the Conservative flagship Hammersmith and Fulham (H&F) council first came to my attention in July 2009, due a campaign launched by a local Labour MP Andy Slaughter. Responding to the council's core strategy options document and its proposals for constructing what it called Decent Neighbourhoods and armed with the yield from a Freedom of Information request, he accused H&F of 'using the language of social cleansing' and of planning 'social engineering on a grand scale'.

"Slaughter has continued to accuse the council of using housing policy to alter the social complexion of the area to the political advantage of the Conservatives, and the administration has continued to strongly deny such claims. However, Slaughter has long cited a Conservative Home article from February 2009 co-written by the then leader of the council Stephen Greenhalgh as further evidence to back his claim that, as he put it to me for an article I wrote in March about opposition to the Earls Court project, the council has 'set out to gerrymander the electorate by reducing the amount of social housing in the borough and increasing the amount of high-value, mostly investment property'."


Ealing Times: "Neighbours blockade road, in protest at Old Oak Lane incinerator plans"

Link to Ealing Times

"RESIDENTS blockaded the road on Saturday morning, as they stepped up their efforts to stop the development of a waste incinerator plant.
"The Triangle Island Residents’ Association protest aimed to highlight the disruption that Clean Power’s lorries would cause them along Old Oak Lane, Acton, near Willesden Junction. Their temporary blockade ended around midday."

BBC: "High Speed 2 compensation to be 'comprehensive'"

Climb aboard the web site

"Residents affected by the first phase of the HS2 rail line will be offered a "comprehensive package of compensation measures", the government says.

"Phase one of the £33bn high-speed rail link, between London and Birmingham, is due to start operating in 2026.

"The Department for Transport says the compensation would be 'significantly beyond statutory requirements'."


Ealing Times: "Neighbours in protest at Old Oak Lane incinerator plant scheme"

Link to Ealing Times

"EALING and Brent residents joined forces to protest outside Willesden Junction station on Saturday (13) against a planned waste incinerator plant off Old Oak Lane, Acton.

"The Island Triangle Residents Association, consisting of more than 200 houses, is particularly concerned at Clean Power’s plans to develop the site so close to their community.

"Battle-hardened TITRA have experience of unwanted developments, having fought for clean air since the neighbouring Powerday Waste Recycling Plant opened.

Brent & Kilburn Times: "Kicking Up Stink over Incinerator" (the front page lead!)

(Click to enlarge, or in addition,
right-click and copy to new window.)


'Wembley Matters' (Brent Greens): Stopping the Harlesden Waste Incinerator

Link to 'Wembley Matters'

"Harlesden residents got a shock last night at the 'Harlesden Connects' forum when they heard of plans to build an 'energy recovery centre' (is this a controversy avoiding term for an incinerator?) at Willesden Junction.

"It is in Ealing borough, but but very close to Brent residents. Apparently Ealing's notification to Brent Council was 'mislaid', so hardly anyone who might be affected had a chance to comment, before the conusltation closed last week. [Just a few] addresses in Ealing and handful of streets in Harlesden received a notification letter."


Evening Standard: "Anthony Hilton: Tracking down the real rail culprits"

Link to web site

"It would be a shame if last week’s fiasco over the West Coast Main Line rail franchise should fade into history without the blame being pinned firmly where it belongs — not on a trio of now-suspended civil servants, but on Theresa Villiers, the former Transport Minister.

"She it was who, while in opposition, dreamed up the idea that rail franchises should be lengthened to 15 years. In power, she said there should be a lessening of the rules attached to the franchises, so the operators would have much more freedom to run the service in their own way, but in return they would have to take on all the financial risk of the operation."

The Independent: "Exclusive: Minister - 'We will fast-track HS2 high speed rail'"

Link to web site

"The Government will defy 'grief and hassle' from its own backbenchers and fast-track plans for a new high-speed rail link between London and Birmingham, the Transport Secretary has told The Independent.

"Patrick McLoughlin dismissed suggestions that the Department for Transport's financial modelling errors behind last week's West Coast Main Line debacle would undermine High Speed Two. The project had the unequivocal backing of both David Cameron and the Chancellor, George Osborne, he added."


BBC: "Boris Johnson warns of 'risk of inertia' over Heathrow future"

Link to BBC web site

"Boris Johnson has called for the debate over Heathrow's future and alternative airport capacity in southern England to be decided by the end of next year.

"The mayor of London said rivals were 'forging ahead' while the UK was deliberating, and he described a review due to report in 2015 as 'glacial'.

" 'There is no reason to go on for three years discussing this,' he said."


Delays to Crossrail tunnelling ahead?

(Photo: currently unknown source/copyright)

Part of the Crossrail spoil conveyor system collapsed at Royal Oak on Thursday, falling onto the spoil train.


CBRD: 'Ringway One': Taking out Kensal Green and Harlesdan

Artist's impression of the West Cross Route above Kensal Green Cemetary
Link to 'Chris's British Road Directory' (CBRD)

"Ringway One would probably have been the largest inner ring road the world had ever seen: an urban motorway encircling about sixty square miles of central London, including the whole of the City, Westminster and all of the present-day Congestion Charging zone, plus almost all of its docklands and the East End.

"Surprisingly, a substantial amount of it was built. The entire eastern flank is there to be driven today, and a short section in the west was opened to traffic, though in recent years has been substantially altered and is no longer recognisably a motorway.

"... The motorway would have taken a slice through Harlesden, Kilburn, West Hampstead, Hampstead, Camden Town, Barnsbury and Islington."

The Guardian: "Earls Court project: avoidable unpleasantness?"

Link to web site

"A fortnight has passed since a dossier was handed to the police alleging that residents of two West London housing estates had been promised preferential treatment in the allocation of replacement homes if they gave their backing to the estates' demolition, and arguing that such behaviour could constitute a criminal offence.

"...Way back in February 2007, the then new leader of the council Stephen Greenhalgh – who Boris Johnson has recently made head of his new office for policing and crime – appeared on the internet channel 18 Doughty Street TV with local Tory MP Greg Hands. Both argued that they wanted to improve the lot of poorer people on their patch of inner West London and tackle deep inequalities. I can no longer find this item online – perhaps someone else have better luck – but I recall feeling that they believed what they were saying.

"Greenhalgh championed the Earls Court project right up until he stepped down as leader earlier this year. Yet to some in the regeneration business the entire Earls Court enterprise has looked unwieldy, impractical and undesirably old-fashioned from the start – a top-heavy, top-down wrecking ball of a scheme that will be difficult to finance, characterised by unrealistic claims and always at risk of incurring resentment. And it doesn't look to me like a project guided by the bottom-up, localist, 'big society' principles that modern Conservative administrations are supposed to be applying, particularly in a London borough seen as a trailblazer for national party policy – David Cameron's favourite council, no less."

Greengauge Report on High Speed Two

Link to web site

"This new report, commissioned from Greengauge 21 by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), RSPB and the Campaign for Better Transport, examines the impacts of HS2 on carbon emissions.

"The report highlights that the first phase of HS2 will lead to a modest reduction in carbon while adding substantial transport capacity. Greater carbon reduction can be achieved by sensible complementary policy measures and by making full use of the capacity that HS2 will release on the existing railway. In addition, the beneficial carbon effect is increased fourfold by the planned extension of HS2 further north.

"Government’s plans for high-speed rail can therefore help meet carbon emissions targets — if supported by a set of bold policy initiatives."

And Old Oak Common: Not The Real Thing


Evening Standard: " £240m bailout to prevent further Crossrail delays"

Link to Evening Standard

"The Government gave a £240 million boost to the Crossrail project today in a bid to avoid further delays to Europe’s largest building scheme.

"Danny Alexander will use his speech to the Lib-Dem conference to announce that the first government loan guarantee to support major infrastructure will be to overcome funding difficulties for Crossrail.

"He will say the £1 billion order for new trains for the massive rail scheme will receive the guarantee in a bid to kick-start UK building projects by boosting industry confidence."


Ealing Gazette: "Ealing homes could be spared HS2 demolition"

View of Hanger Lane gyratory
Link to Ealing Gazette

"... Campaigners have been fighting for the route to be tunnelled under the borough. The Gazette reported how Ealing Council last month pressured HS2 to look at the option of a tunnel.

"However, it was also confirmed that all 10 bridges carrying traffic over the tracks – running alongside the Central line from a new interchange at Old Oak Common, East Acton, to Northolt – would be replaced and temporary bridges installed during construction.

"This includes the east and west bridges at the congested Hanger Lane gyratory, where the North Circular meets the A40."


The Guardian: "Let's move to Harlesden and Old Oak Common"

Link to web site

"The 'common' in question is more steel than oak, a curling mass of sidings and railway sheds which, one day, will metamorphose into the centre of the blooming universe, to become the main London interchange between High Speed Two from The North and Crossrail.

"Harlesden has been quietly preparing for its moment in the sun. It has aspirations, for the first time since it was built in the 19th century, when the future was steam-powered. Brent Council appears to have invested in bollards and the odd patch of paving. Stonebridge estate, which once had a 'reputation', has gone, replaced by terraces and front gardens.

"People call Harlesden 'the new Acton', as it rubs shoulders with loftier suburbs, such as Queen's Park and Kensal Rise. It is only a matter of time, they say, before this dusty corner becomes The Next Big Place. For now, Harlesden is neatened up, but still a riotous mash-up of Portuguese caffs beside proper Irish pubs. 

"When The North does arrive en masse, I can think of no finer welcome to The Smoke."


Evening Standard: "Earls Court demolition ‘is social cleansing’"

Link to Evening Standard

"Two west London housing estates and the Earls Court exhibition centre are to be demolished, after an £8 billion regeneration scheme was given the go-ahead.

"Residents accused Hammersmith and Fulham council of 'social cleansing', as outline planning permission for the development was granted at a stormy meeting last night.

"Under the scheme, based on a masterplan by architect Sir Terry Farrell, 761 homes will be bulldozed, as well as Earls Court. The council has promised residents will get contracts guaranteeing them a new home on the 57-acre development, and compensation."


Evening Standard: "The mothership lands: A striking new design for airport which could solve crisis"

Link to Evening Standard

"New plans for a floating airport in the Thames Estuary have been unveiled by a major global architecture firm.

"London Britannia Airport, designed by architects Gensler, includes four floating runways tethered to the sea bed.

"The Gensler experts say new runways could be floated in as required - allowing for future expansion to accommodate six landing strips."


BBC: "Third runway: Boris Johnson warns of 'stealthy U-turn' on Heathrow"

Link to BBC web site

"The Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has warned of a 'stealthy U-turn' by the government on the third runway at Heathrow.

"Speaking on The World At One Mr Johnson, who favours the building of a new airport on the Thames estuary, said it was important that the government 'level with Londoners about their intentions'."


Sunday Telegraph: "Boris Island airport 'almost as quick to build as third Heathrow runway'"

Link to Sunday Telegraph

"A new airport in the Thames estuary could be built within 14 years, only two years longer than would be needed to build a third runway at Heathrow, according to new research.

"... The scheme has previously been criticised for taking too long before it could ease pressure on Britain's busiest airport.

"But a report for architects Foster + Partners, which has produced the plans for an airport on the Isle of Grain in Kent, suggest it would barely take longer than proposals to extend Heathrow."

The Independent on Sunday: "Secret plan for new four-runway airport near Heathrow"

Link to web site
"Ambitious plans for a four-runway airport near Heathrow are to be submitted to the Government, as a solution to the aviation crisis that has divided the coalition, The Independent on Sunday can reveal.

"A world-leading infrastructure firm is assessing sites to the west and north-west of London which could rival, or even replace, Heathrow to challenge other European hubs in providing air links with the Far East. Sites in Oxfordshire and Berkshire could potentially be in the frame for the airport, estimated to cost £40bn to £60bn.

"Justine Greening, the Secretary of State for Transport, is to launch a call for evidence as early as this week on how to increase airport capacity, after winning a major political battle to rule out a third runway at Heathrow."


BBC: "Heathrow third runway not right for UK, says Greening"

Link to BBC web site

"Justine Greening has said the government remains opposed to a third runway at Heathrow, despite calls from Conservative MPs for a change of heart.

"The transport secretary said expanding Heathrow was 'not right' for the UK and other options needed to be considered - including building a new hub airport.

"Some ministers have reportedly urged a rethink, amid strong business support."


Evening Standard: "London master planner creates a new west London city with 12,000 homes"

Architect Terry Farrell unveils his vision for a forgotten 99-acre industrial site three miles from Oxford Circus that will transform west London, reports David Spittles

Link to Evening Standard

"Tube and train upgrades provide the single biggest boost to property prices, catapulting a district from dire to desirable in five years and doubling house values. Homes in the revitalised King’s Cross/St Pancras area, now Europe’s busiest transport hub, have done just that since 2007.

"So where should home buyers be looking now? One answer lies in grandly named Park Royal City, in a plan unveiled this week by architect and London master planner Sir Terry Farrell. It refers to 99-acre Old Oak Common, bigger than the whole of the Royal Docks in east London, and known for not very much except its railway depots.

"Once a green expanse, it lies north of Wormwood Scrubs and the Westway but only three miles from Oxford Circus.

"Insiders are already scouting this hidden district of north-west London where a giant transport interchange is planned that will link with Crossrail and HS2, the proposed 'electric spine' between London and the North, a project given momentum by the Government’s £9.4 billion package of rail infrastructure investment announced last month. [The 'electric spine' is elecrification of existing rail lines, and has nothing to do with HS2.]

"Much of the land is owned by public sector bodies and is disused. Hammersmith and Fulham council believes regeneration will have a huge impact on surrounding areas such as Acton and Harlesden, and the ripple will spread to Shepherd’s Bush and White City, north Kensington and Chiswick."

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