Gensler has unveiled its pitch for an airport built on giant platforms in the middle of the city’s Thames Estuary.
Global architecture firm Gensler has revealed its concept for a new London airport to alleviate the congestion at Heathrow. London Britannia Airport would be situated in the Thames Estuary, with four 5km floating runways tethered to the sea bed and the final departure concourse. This would provide access to marine rail tunnels conecting to central London and the European High Speed Rail networks.
This unique solution would minimize noise disruption to existing communities, enable 24 hour passenger arrival and departure, and avoid any demolition of homes. Runways could be floated in and out as required for maintenance and future expansion.
Land-based Departure/Arrival terminals are proposed to the north and south of the estuary, with a third between Canary Wharf and the Olympic Park. The airport has also been designed to generate much of its own power from marine turbines situated within and adjacent to the floating runways. The project director, Ian Mulcahey, said:
This will be a ‘national’ infrastructure project that can inject new pace and dynamism into our economy. The airport can be quickly manufactured in the ship yards and steel works across the UK and can be floated by sea and positioned in the Estuary. This isn’t a London Airport, it is a Global Airport, designed, manufactured and built in the UK.