Wandsworth pushing Heathrow link

Wandsworth Council is set to appoint a transport consultancy to develop the case for a direct rail service from Clapham Junction to Heathrow.

The aim is to create a 30-minute journey to the airport for borough residents and businesses.

The council believes Heathrow is poorly served by public transport, with south Londoners having to cross the river to catch a train from Paddington or a Piccadilly Line service. The last Heathrow rail scheme, named Airtrack, was spearheaded by the Heathrow’s owner, BAA, but abandoned in 2011.

Following discussions and the proposal of several possible routes, LB Wandsworth is now looking to appoint a transport consultancy to access their feasibility.

Leader of Wandsworth Council Ravi Govindia said: “Our success in bringing the Northern Line to Battersea shows just how much a council can achieve when it takes the initiative on transport improvements.

“Our ultimate aim is to put Heathrow within 30mins reach for local people.”

Despite recognising the importance of connections to the airport for local residents and businesses, Wandsworth remains opposed to any expansion beyond the current two-runway footprint.

Some observers feel that a constrained Heathrow is a doomed Heathrow, and that if a new hub airport is built elsewhere, Heathrow would be forced to close. Lookwest is hosting a debate around this subject on March 4 – click here for more information.

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