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London City Airport £344m expansion gets government approval

The government has given the go-ahead for a £344m plan to expand London City Airport.

The chancellor, transport secretary and communities secretary all backed the scheme, which is expected to add £1.5bn to the UK economy by 2025.

Work will include an extended terminal, new aircraft taxiway and parking spaces for planes.

London City Airport will also make a number of investments in transport links around the airport, including paying £2.6m to fund the cost of additional DLR rolling stock.

It will also invest in a bus and taxi access scheme and improving walking and cycle routes to the airport.

Civil contractors today said the move was “good news for the capital” but added that bolder steps were required to address the nation’s airport capacity.

Civil Engineering Contractors Association head of external affairs Marie-Claude Hemming said the project was “a far cry from solving the UK’s airport capacity deficit”.

“International connectivity will become even more important for the British economy once we leave the European Union,” she said.

“The government needs to grasp the nettle and commit to a programme of airport expansion. This is a decision of national importance that must not be further delayed due to party political considerations.”

Last year the Davies Commission recommended Heathrow as the preferred option for airport expansion in the South. However, the government has yet to make a decision on whether to back the expansion of Heathrow or Gatwick.

Ms Hemming said: “What is important now, whether the government opts to expand Heathrow or Gatwick, is that a decision is taken without delay.

“Time and again this issue has been kicked into the long grass. We call on Theresa May to show that her government is of a different stripe, and commit to a solution to show Britain will be open for business in a post-Brexit world.”

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