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Manchester Airport unveils video showcasing planned £1bn transformation

26 February 2016  •  Author: Katie Sadler, Digital Content Producer, International Airport Review

Manchester Airport has published footage of how it will look in 10 years following a proposed £1bn transformation project.

Manchester Airport Transformation Programme

Speaking at the opening of the UK Northern Powerhouse Conference at Manchester Central, Manchester Airports Managing Director Ken O’Toole unveiled a new fly-through video showcasing how the airport would look in 10-year’s time following an investment programme worth £1 billion. The project is currently subject to planning permission.

The video displays a state-of-the-art terminal building created through the expansion of the airport’s existing Terminal Two building.

Mr O’Toole said the project will give the whole of the North the “global gateway it deserves.”

He added his support to efforts to create a Northern Powerhouse, saying: “It is 18 months since the Northern Powerhouse phrase was first coined by Chancellor  – and north west MP – George Osborne and some good progress has been made.

Manchester Airport transformation Project will give the whole of the North the “global gateway it deserves”

“The importance of a strong and vibrant Northern economy is more widely acknowledged than ever before and there can be no doubt there is increased recognition around the world that the North is both an attractive place to visit and to do business with.”

Mr O’Toole said Manchester Airport now has services to more than 210 destinations, with direct flights to Beijing starting with Hainan Airlines in June. It will boost the UK economy by £250m, he added.

The Airport Managing Director went on to highlight what more can be done to fully unlock the potential of the Northern economy.

Mr O’Toole said ‘it was long haul services that are key to long term growth in the UK but South East airports are currently full.’

‘That means Government should not just focus on where a new runway should be built in the South East but on how spare capacity at airports like Manchester could be made use of. Manchester Airport handles 23 million passengers a year but has the capacity for 55 million.’ 

He added: “It follows that the Government should be doing far more than it is to drive the development of air services, and particularly, new long haul services across the country.

“One of the key ways it can do this is ensuring UK aviation taxation policy does not make UK airports uncompetitive against our European and world peers, peers that we compete with daily for the limited aircraft that airlines have to deploy.

“At Manchester Airport, we have worked hard to develop a worldwide route network to be proud of and I have already name-checked the places we now connect to.

“But for all these successes, we are playing catch-up. Growth in long haul seats at our European peers has been two-and-half times the rate seen at Manchester Airport over the past decade.”

He added: “Just imagine the Chinese firm hunting for a location for its new European HQ, which will create 500 high value jobs.  One great European city has a direct flight and one doesn’t – where will it pick?

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