Phasing the expansion of Heathrow

In this section we set out our current thinking on when the different aspects of Heathrow’s Preferred Masterplan could be developed and delivered over time.

At each phase, we set out the infrastructure that will be required to accommodate estimated passenger numbers (million passengers per annum, or mppa).

The phasing shown is indicative and represents key snapshots in time; the speed of delivery of infrastructure could be affected by changing passenger demand, affordability or other factors. We have phased our proposals as follows:

  • Phase 0 – up to around 2026: As part of our application to expand Heathrow, we propose that some of the extra fl ights, which could be up to 25,000 additional air transport movements (ATMs) per year, are introduced early on our existing two runways prior to our proposed third runway being brought into operation
  • Phase 1 – around 2026: Represents the anticipated date when the proposed new runway becomes operational
  • Phase 2 – around 2030: Represents when the airport reaches approximately 115mppa. The Airports NPS sets out that this is when half of journeys to and from the airport should be made using public transport
  • Phase 3 – around 2035: Represents when the airport reaches approximately 130mppa and approximately 740,000 ATMs
  • Phase 4 – around 2050: Represents when the airport reaches approximately 142mppa and approximately 756,000 ATMs. This represents the point at which the Preferred Masterplan will be substantially complete.

The following sections provide an explanation of how we currently envisage the phased expansion of the airport will take place.

Phase 1 – around 2026 (Opening day)

The new runway and taxiway connections will have been completed. The M25, A4, A3044 and river corridors affected by the runway will have been diverted and road access to Terminal 5 from the M25 will be relocated to the south.

The Colnbrook Rail Head will have been realigned and will continue to be used to transport construction materials needed for the Project and aviation fuel.

The Immigration Removals Centre and other displaced development such as freight forwarding facilities and hotels will have been be re-provided.

The Northern Perimeter Road will still be operational, as will many of the existing land uses along it. Sites along Bath Road, such as the Regus offices and Thistle and Premier Inn Hotels, and the existing car parks in this area will also be operational.

Drainage and pollution control measures will be operational to drain and treat the surface water run-off from the new runway and taxiway areas to protect our local rivers and streams. The multi-storey car park on the existing Terminal 4 long stay site will be complete.

Phase 2 – around 2030 (approximately 115 mppa)

The first phase of the new Terminal 5X will be open. The fi rst phase of the new Terminal 5X will be open. T2A Phase 2 will also have been delivered.

The Northern Perimeter Road parking areas will still be operational, however some of the spaces currently serving Terminal 5 will be reallocated to serving Terminal 2.

To make up for the loss of parking spaces assigned to Terminal 5, and to serve the increase in passenger capacity, half of the Southern Parkway will be built and operational.

New and improved road infrastructure in the south of the airport, consisting of works to Stanwell Moor Junction and the Southern Perimeter Road, a new landside link road through the cargo area, and a new southern road tunnel to the Central Terminal Area, will also be constructed.

Phase 3 – around 2035 (approximately 130 mppa)

Additional phases of Terminal 5X will have been built, including a northerly extension.

The first section of the Terminal 5X North northern satellite will be operational, with additional aircraft stands and taxiways.

The Southern Parkway will be fully built. The Northern Parkway will be in use as a surface level parking area for the Central Terminal Area to replace some of the parking areas lost due to the closure of the west end of the Northern Perimeter Road.

Improvements to M4 Junction 4 and new roads from the diverted A4 will provide access to the Northern Parkway.

Phase 4 – around 2050 (approximately 142 mppa)

Terminal 5X and satellite T5X North will be fully built.

The area where the Central Terminal Area is today will also be fully developed. There will be a full Terminal 2 northern extension, a new T2C satellite and the T2D satellite with remote aircraft stands.

A new aircraft hangar will be provided within the existing maintenance base area.

The Northern Parkway will be fully developed with multi-storey car parking buildings to serve the expanded Terminal 2 campus.

Additional taxiways will be added to access and exit the runways to improve airfield performance.

As construction demands reduce in the railhead area, surplus land will be reused to accommodate increasing airport supporting development, avoiding the need to take additional land.

See our plan phases in more detail

Please note, for a more detailed explanation of each phase and the ability to zoom into the map image of each, visit our Plans page.