Gatwick has taken its first step towards bringing its existing northern “standby” runway into routine use.
The airport has informed the Planning Inspectorate it is preparing an application for the necessary development consent.
If successful, the runway could be brought into use alongside the airport’s main airstrip “by the mid-2020s”, Gatwick said on Wednesday (28 August).
Gatwick’s notice will establish a Gatwick Airport Northern Runway hub on the Planning Inspectorate website, constituting the first step in its pursuit of a formal development consent order (DCO).
The airport will next month submit a scoping request, setting out its proposed approach and the key issues likely to pose challenges during the DCO process.
Its vision is to eventually bring its existing northern or standby runway into use for small, departing aircraft.
Tim Norwood, Gatwick’s chief planning officer, said: “The start of the process to use our existing northern runway is a significant milestone. This project has the capacity to offer significant local economic benefits, new jobs and an exciting future for the region.
“As we take our plans forward, we are committed to working in partnership with our local communities, councils and partners to ensure we grow sustainably and present information in a clear and transparent way, including a more detailed stage of public consultation on the project next year.”