Landscape and Visual Impact

We want to ensure that as we expand Heathrow we take account of any effects on the character of the landscape and views.

Aspects of our proposals that could cause effects

The construction and operation of the new runway, terminals and aprons, and related development, together with diverted and new local road connections, has the potential to result in direct physical effects as well as indirect effects on landscape character and visual amenity. The increased number of flights that will use an expanded Heathrow has the potential to affect the tranquillity of the landscape and affect views.

A summary of the effects reported in the Preliminary Environmental Information Report (PEIR)

Our preliminary assessment concludes that as a result of construction or operation of the Project there will be some significant negative effects on landscape and views (those who will have a view of an expanded Heathrow).

These effects will occur due to the physical development and operational procedures described above. Landscape effects are primarily expected to occur within landscapes and townscapes at and between Cranford and Harmondsworth, within the Colne Valley between Harmondsworth and Stanwell, and within townscapes at and between Stanwell and Feltham. Effects on views are mainly expected in the areas of Harlington to Harmondsworth, Poyle to Colnbrook, Richings Park to Brands Hill, and Stanwell to Bedfont.

Measures for reducing potential effects

Environmental measures employed to limit landscape and visual effects during construction will include:

  • The protection of existing trees and other vegetation that is to be retained;
  • The management of site lighting;
  • Carefully planned and well-maintained temporary earthworks;
  • Hoardings and fencing to minimise disturbance.

Limiting landscape and visual effects during operation will be achieved through a commitment to good design of the built environment, public realm, landscape and green infrastructure relating to the Heathrow expansion. These measures are integral to the Project’s design, as set out in the Preferred Masterplan document, and we propose to commit to a set of Design Principles at DCO application stage.

We are developing a Landscape Strategy which is driven by our ambition to become one of the most sustainable hub airports in the world. As part of this, we have developed and are consulting on a Landscape Toolkit, which sets out guidelines to achieve our emerging Landscape Strategy. Our Toolkit offers devices such as ‘ecological woodland’ or ‘biodiverse grassland’ and guidelines to describe how good design will be secured.

A key part of our emerging Landscape Strategy is the planned Green Loop which is expected to stretch for 20km around the airport. The Green Loop will improve connectivity around the airport perimeter, linking up communities, landscaped areas, public open spaces and biodiversity sites with walking and cycling routes.

Have your say

We want to know what you think about our proposals to manage the environmental effects of expansion and, in particular:

  • whether there are any other initiatives or proposals that we should consider to address the emissions from airport related traffic or airport operations;
  • our proposals to help health and well-being, in particular whether there are any proposals that you think we should consider to address the effect of the Project on the health and wellbeing of our colleagues, neighbours and passengers;
  • our noise insulation schemes;
  • what factors are most important as we develop our proposals for noise management, in particular our proposals for the design and implementation of a noise envelope;
  • our proposals for maximising new jobs and training, in particular, whether there are any other ways that we can maximise skills and training opportunities to benefit our local communities;
  • on our approach to addressing effects on the historic environment, including any particular proposals you would like us to consider.

To respond to our proposals please answer the overarching question on the Environmental Introduction page.

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