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London City Airport

Volume 502: debated on Tuesday 8 December 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Transport what recent discussions (a) he and (b) officials in his Department have had with (i) National Air Traffic Services (NATS) and (ii) the Civil Aviation Authority on the decision to modify the flight routings of aircraft using London City Airport; and for what reasons such revised routings did not form part of the further public consultation on the NATS Terminal Control North proposal. (303851)

The revised standard instrument departure (SID) routings at London City airport were implemented in accordance with the independent airspace change process under which it is for the airspace change sponsor to develop and consult upon proposals. It is then for the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), the independent airspace regulator, to assess the proposals against regulatory requirements and either approve or reject the proposal.

The Terminal Control North (TC North) proposals, of which the London City SID changes originally formed a part, are a package of measures designed to reduce delay whilst maintaining safety and improving environmental performance in one of the most complex areas of airspace in the world. Following the outcome of last year’s public consultation, NATS decided to review the TC North design options. However, the London City airport SID change element was aimed at meeting already established International Civil Aviation Organisation design standards. In the circumstances, the London City SID changes were removed from the TC North proposals and progressed as a stand alone proposal. The CAA considered that further consultation on the London City airport SID changes were not needed as they had already been included in the full TC North consultation.