Trains For America

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Study suggests leave Heathrow alone

The Brits have some of the same problems which beset transportation policy in the Colonies. It is hard to restrain those aviation daydreamers. Some food for thought in this item from The Independent.

Benefits of third runway at Heathrow ‘are exaggerated’

By Emily Dugan

Published: 22 August 2007


The true economic benefits of the Heathrow expansion have been vastly exaggerated, according to an independent investigation into the White Paper on the third runway.

The claim of a potential £7.8bn benefit to the economy, used by the Department of Transport to justify the growth of the airport, was described by investigators as “overestimated”, while the financial benefits to the UK were found to be questionable by the independent consultancy Colin Buchanan, whose inquiry was commissioned by the Green Party.

The 2003 White Paper that provided much of the basis for justifying Heathrow’s expansion described the “strong economic benefits” of a third runway. Yet according to the independent investigation shown to The Independent, many of the figures used in the report were overestimated. Vastly different assumptions on the economic value of passenger time savings were used in the report than are normally applied to assess transport benefits. If the report had applied the usual cost to transport for “value of time”, the estimated benefits would have come out 40 per cent lower.


Filed under: Passenger Rail Transportatio Policy

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