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This document is the Non-Technical Summary of the Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR) prepared on behalf of Gatwick Airport Limited (GAL) for the proposal to make best use of Gatwick Airport’s existing runways (referred to as ‘the Project’).

GAL is seeking permission for alterations to the existing northern runway at Gatwick Airport which, along with lifting the current restrictions on its use, would enable dual runway operations. The Project includes the development of a range of infrastructure and facilities which, together with the alterations to the northern runway, would enable GAL to increase its passenger throughput to 75.6 million passengers per annum by 2038. This would represent an increase of 13.2 million passengers per annum compared to the forecast throughput of 62.4 million passengers per annum in the absence of the Project.  The site location and boundary for the Project shown below.

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County and district boundaries

The Planning Act 2008, as amended, defines Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects (NSIPs). Alterations to existing airports in England fall under the Planning Act 2008, as amended, where the alteration would exceed defined thresholds. The Project would fall within the definition of an alteration to Gatwick Airport and would meet the threshold for change in the number of passengers and would therefore represent an airport NSIP. 

Alterations to existing highways also fall within the scope of the Planning Act 2008.  The proposed highway improvements would involve the alteration of a highway where the speed limit is 50 mph or over and where the relevant area threshold of 12.5 hectares is exceeded. Therefore, the Project also includes works that constitute a highways NSIP in their own right. 

As such there is a requirement to submit an application for development consent for the Project to the Planning Inspectorate to be decided by the Secretary of State.

The Planning Act defines the key stages in the application process for Nationally Significant Infrastructure Projects.  These stages are summarised in Diagram 1. The Project is currently at the pre-application stage. 

Diagram 1: Overview of the Application Process



At this time, a formal process of Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) is ongoing to identify the likely environmental effects of the Project, both positive (beneficial) and negative (adverse).

The EIA process is being undertaken in accordance with the Infrastructure Planning (Environmental Impact Assessment) Regulations 2017, as amended (referred to as the EIA Regulations). The PEIR presents the preliminary findings of the EIA process. 

This summary document provides an overview of the PEIR in non-technical language. The PEIR, including this Non-Technical Summary, forms part of the consultation material prepared by GAL as part of the pre-application process.

Details of how to view the full PEIR or to obtain further copies of this Non-Technical Summary are provided at the end of this document.


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