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LETTERS & OPINION: Airports - too much of what we like.


Dear Editor, - Neil Maybury ( Post Jan 20) is correct with much of his analysis, but mistaken to believe that the expansion of Birmingham International Airport will bring any substantial benefit to the area.

He quite rightly points out that there are already two airports, Birmingham and Coventry, in very close proximity.

Yet the third phase of the proposed extension at Birmingham is to build what is in effect a third airport in Solihull.

Mr Maybury is also right to question the economic case for further expansion. The final phase of the expansion is not set for completion until around 2020.

But by 2020 oil will be in increasing shorter supply and more expensive.

The tax concessions made to air travel will probably have been removed and patterns of air travel as we understand them now, will be in a process of change, since it will no longer be so affordable.

This means that within a few years the additional facilities provided by the expansion of Birmingham airport will become obsolete, but the damage caused to the environment and destruction of green belt will remain.

Throughout history we have had a tendency to be short-sighted and build far too many of what we like, whatever the fashion may be.

In the 19th century we built railway lines all over our little islands and in the 20th century had to close and rationalise them.

We are about to make the same mistake with airports.

MIKE SHERIDAN Kings Norton Green Party
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Jan 26, 2006
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