Leeds Bradford Airport has won the hearts and minds of Leeds City Council, by being given approval to go ahead with a groundbreaking £150 million project to renovate the airport’s terminal. Indeed, the Airport’s owners had to convince the Council that the benefits outweighed the environmental impacts, the latter of which had been strongly opposed.
The 9 to 5 effect
The Leeds City Council Panel voted nine to five in favour of approving the plans for the terminal subject to further discussions with the Airport over the conditions of the agreement. Once these discussions have taken place, the Airport will present an updated plan regarding the development, which will require a final approval from the Council.
A spokesperson from Leeds City Council took steps to ensure that objections to the development had been carefully considered, and in line with government guidance. They said:
“There were a large number of matters for plans panel members to consider during this process, including the council’s declaration of a climate emergency and the issue of increasing carbon emissions from flights.”
Furthermore, the spokesperson put a different spin on the debate, by stating that the growth of Leeds Bradford Airport could reduce road traffic emissions, by ensuring that local passengers stay local. They said:
“Current Government policy points to these emissions being something that should be primarily tackled at a national level – and addressed through international agreements and protocols – rather than by suppressing growth at individual airports in a way that could simply export passengers to other nearby airports at a higher financial cost to them and increase surface transport emissions.”
The renovation of the Airport Terminal is centered around constructing a new three-storey Terminal, which will acquire 365,000 square feet within the boundaries of the Airport. This will result in the city of Leeds creating an additional 12,650 permanent jobs, and a further 850 construction jobs.
Furthermore, this project will increase the environmental friendliness of the Terminal building and presents the opportunity to extend the Airport’s operational hours up until 11:30 PM, thereby resulting in increased flight frequencies. As such, Airport Passenger traffic is likely to increase from current levels of four million to seven million by the year 2030.
Should the city’s storied football and rugby teams prosper in the coming years, they could benefit from an increased fan base visiting their stadiums, with the prospect of increased flight routes inbound to Leeds Bradford Airport!
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