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Gatwick takes investment to over £3 billion with new five-year plan

More than £1 billion to be spent to support airline growth and enhance the airport experience for passengers.

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Artist’s impression of Gatwick’s Pier 6 shows the proposed new extension to the west of the pier, more than doubling its size compared to today, and also highlighting other aspects of the project including the position of the new A380 stand on Pier 5, and the widened taxiway which will enable the A380 to move between the pier and the runway.

Gatwick Airport Chief Executive, Stewart Wingate is today announcing the new five-year Capital Investment Plan (CIP) for Gatwick at the British-Irish Airports Expo in London.

The airport will spend £1.11 billion up to 2023, with £266 million planned for 2018/19 alone.

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Gatwick expects to continue growing its long-haul operation and predicts that passenger numbers will increase to nearly 53 million by 2023.  The airport is committed to exploring how to grow sustainably, while supporting the local and national economy, improving facilities and continuing to transform services for passengers.

Since the airport changed ownership in December 2009 the total investment figure, combined with this new five- year plan rises to £3.14 billion.

Wide-ranging projects are identified across the airport with a number of significant and exciting projects getting underway this year including:

  • Pier 6 Western Extension – Phase 1 works start with enabling Pier 5 to handle the A380 aircraft, so that it can move from its current home on Pier 6. This work will also involve the widening and reconfiguration of a taxiway to accommodate the 80-metre wingspan of the A380.
  • A new domestic arrivals facility, including a new baggage reclaim in South Terminal.
  • A new mezzanine level extension in the North Terminal departure lounge to accommodate new restaurants.
  • Completion of the road system and taxiway entrance to the new Boeing aircraft hangar to connect the airfield with the new facility.  The new hangar opens next year and will service the growing number of long-haul aircraft operating from Gatwick.
  • Trial of biometric auto-boarding technology in the North Terminal and extending the roll-out of self-service bag drop across both Terminals.
  • Re-development of South Terminal hotel capacity.
  • Completion of the South Terminal long stay car park decking project, providing an additional 1,200 car parking spaces for summer 2018.
  • Projects to support greater use of electric vehicles, continuing to reduce the airport’s environmental impact and supporting our ambition to be the UK’s most sustainable airport.
  • Enabling works for Network Rail’s planned upgrade to the Gatwick station.
  • Investment in joint equipment for ground handlers to use at Gatwick which drives efficiency for airfield and baggage operations.
  • New reception centre for passengers with reduced mobility in the North Terminal.

Gatwick’s Chief Executive, Stewart Wingate, said:

“Gatwick is a major piece of national infrastructure, and our continued growth and ability to attract long-haul airlines is vital for the health of the UK economy, particularly in a post-Brexit world. We are exploring ways to grow our capacity, including developing new systems and processes to handle more passengers, and considering how we use all our existing infrastructure in the future. 

“By committing to spend another £1.11 billion, Gatwick can continue to grow sustainably, attract new airlines and offer more global connections, while providing an excellent service to passengers.

“This year we will welcome new quieter aircraft with the introduction of A321s by easyJet and we are developing our infrastructure now, by reconfiguring airfield stands and planning for the construction of a major extension to our Pier 6 facility. These initiatives will support this next phase of growth.

“Looking beyond this capital investment programme, we welcome the Government’s support for airports making best use of their existing runways and we will plan for our longer term future by developing a Masterplan later this year”.

Gatwick is widely recognised for its award winning technological innovation– and has also identified a number of emerging projects which look to harness technology to further improve efficiency and service.  Examples of these include:

  • An integrated command and airport operations centre: to facilitate shared real-time operational awareness and management data between the airport, the airlines and their ground handlers.
  • Robotic car parking: explore the use of robots to park cars, offering efficient use of existing car park spaces through clos-space parking.
  • Smart taxiway lighting system: to provide real-time directional airfield ground lighting to guide aircraft to and from the runway and parking stands.

The Capital Investment Programme is a rolling five year plan which is published annually. This allows the CIP to be refreshed regularly as market conditions and operational needs change. It is published on the Gatwick website and can be found here.

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Gatwick

Whiteboards out at Gatwick as digital screens go down

Passengers huddle around large white boards as staff frantically try to keep them informed.

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Photo by Edmund von der Burg @evdb

Gatwick has had to take to writing flight information on whiteboards as their digital screens went down due to a technical issue.

The issue had occurred with the boards IT provider Vodafone.

Photo by @GinaMurrin

A spokesperson for Gatwick Airport said:

“Due to an ongoing issue with Vodafone, a provider of IT services for Gatwick, flight information is not being displayed correctly on the airports digital screens and is currently being displayed manually in the terminals. 

Gatwick would like to apologise to any passengers affected and expect Vodafone to resolve the issue as soon as possible.”

Gatwick added that this is only affecting a small number of flights in and out.

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Vodafone say the problems are down to a ‘damaged fibre cable’.

A spokesperson for Vodafone said:

“We have identified a damaged fibre cable which is used by Gatwick Airport to display flight information.

“Our engineers are working hard to fix the cable as quickly as possible. This is a top priority for us and we are very sorry for any problems caused by this issue. We are keeping Gatwick Airport constantly informed of progress.”

There are lots of staff are in the terminal working with passengers keeping them informed and lots of tanoy announcements.

But whilst many stories are reporting suggested chaos, passengers in the terminal are saying the situation is not that bad:

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