Leading architect Make has unveiled further studies to support its proposals for an expansion of Stansted Airport as a viable option in the on-going debate surrounding the UK’s future aviation strategy.
Together with an expert multi-disciplinary team, Make has produced a self-funded study which will provide the crux of its submission to the Airports Commission and illustrates the feasibility of expanding Stansted to enable it to become an international hub airport.
Building on existing infrastructure, the practice states that Stansted can connect with central London within 25 minutes, thereby making it one of the most deliverable and affordable solutions currently on the table, costing £18billion to deliver and providing up to £100billion in investment for the east of the country.
Ken Shuttleworth, founder of Make said: "Everyone now recognises the need for new airport capacity in order to maintain the UK’s position in the global economy. The question remains as to where. The location should be such that it can serve the whole country efficiently for the next century. We have proved that Stansted is a viable option, deliverable, affordable and linking to central London in less than 30 minutes, crucially ensuring the distribution of growth and economic development to benefit the national population."
Stuart Blower, partner at Make said: "The main benefits of upgrading Stansted is that there is no requirement for planes to fly over London which minimises the number of people affected whilst still ensuring the growth in capacity. By building on existing facilities and infrastructure, construction and development can be phased if necessary, up-front costs can be reduced and the benefits of existing assets can be maximised through improved surface public transport connections."
Make’s strategy will act as a catalyst for the Lea Valley and the Eastern Regions, building on the growing technology and R&D corridor that is developing between the east of London and Cambridge and facilitating a new centre of gravity that allows the eastern towns and cities to prosper in the same manner that Heathrow has done for the Thames Valley.
The proposals cover extensive improvements to existing national infrastructure including the West Anglia Main Line and a new Stansted Express to link the airport with Liverpool Street in 25 minutes. Other options studied include extending Crossrail 1 and Crossrail 2 to link Stansted with a number of central London locations in 30 minutes; refurbishing and extending the Varsity Line to Cambridge, Oxford and beyond; and a potential third High Speed rail line (HS3) connecting to St Pancras in central London.
Stansted’s transformation provides an opportunity to embed sustainable principles at the heart of the design philosophy to ensure it is an exemplar airport and mitigate against its impact at a local and regional scale.
Make intends to submit their proposals to the Airports Commission in July.