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Heathrow wants HS2 to utilise offsite hubs

Heathrow Airport has said it wants other national infrastructure projects to use its offsite construction hubs.

Four logistics hubs will be built in different areas of the UK, enabling components to be assembled offsite before being transported to the airport’s third runway project.

A spokesperson said Heathrow was now working with other infrastructure clients to look at using the hubs to help deliver their major projects.

These include HS2, Highways England’s programmes, new nuclear at Sizewell, and the planned restoration of the Houses of Parliament.

Heathrow chairman Lord Deighton said: “An expanded Heathrow is for all of Britain and the logistics hubs are instrumental in our aim to ensure that expansion spreads the huge potential of its economic benefits across the UK, while minimising the impact on the airport’s local communities.

“Offsite construction is an innovative way for these balances to be met and we can’t wait to see for ourselves the opportunity we have in working with the best businesses in the country.”

Today marked the beginning of a nationwide tour of the 65 sites bidding to host the hubs with Lord Deighton visiting Leeds Bradford Airport.

Each bidder will be assessed on its “engineering prowess”, access to a “skilled and dedicated workforce”, and “good connectivity allowing output to be easily transported to Heathrow”.

Site assessments are scheduled to be completed by the middle of this year, with a prequalification questionnaire process commencing before the end of 2018.

The longlist of potential sites features local authorities and private companies, and includes sites overseen by contractors Laing O’Rourke and Balfour Beatty, among others, from the construction sector.

Heathrow offsite hubs: Construction sector bidders

Laing O’Rourke Explore Industrial Park East Midlands
Tarmac Tarmac Hindlow Quarry East Midlands
Balfour Beatty Birch Coppice Industrial Estate West Midlands
Severfield Dalton Airfield Industrial Estate Yorkshire and the Humber
Tarmac Tarmac Thrislington Works North East
Tarmac Tarmac Westbury Works South West

By carrying out large parts of the construction off site, Heathrow hopes to boost productivity, push 60 per cent of procurement outside of London and reduce the impact of construction on the area around the airport.

The government is due to publish its National Policy Statement on Heathrow in the coming months for MPs to vote on.

If approved, it will allow the planning process for the construction of a third runway to begin.

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