MPs rank Heathrow third runway as UK's most important infrastructure project
A third runway at Heathrow is ranked as the most important UK infrastructure project, surpassing High-Speed 2 (HS2) and Hinkley Point nuclear power station, according to a new poll of MPs by ComRes.
Canvassing 150 MPs, the survey found that 65% of respondents support the construction of a third runway at Britain’s largest airport, compared to 21% who oppose the project.
A new runway at Heathrow was also deemed to be the most beneficial project to the UK economy amongst those surveyed (38%) and is also perceived to offer the most long-term economic benefits to the country by 40% of respondents.
The decision on whether to greenlight the major infrastructure project has been mired by inaction on behalf of the government, who have faced major opposition from pressure groups questioning the environmental impact of the work.
The poll’s findings have been jumped on by Heathrow Chief Executive Officer John Holland-Kaye, as a sign of the widespread backing within government for the controversial proposals and again called on a decision to made imminently.
He said: “At an uncertain time for the British economy, MPs recognise that Heathrow is a private sector infrastructure project that will spread growth across Britain from the moment that we get a green light.
“Now more than ever, people across Britain are counting on the Government to take bold decisions that show we are a confident outward looking trading nation. MPs are clear that expanding Heathrow will help secure Britain’s long-term economic future.”
However, with both major political parties reeling from the fall-out of Thursday’s EU referendum, it seems likely that the oft-delayed decision may face further setbacks.