July 04 2008
The Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) has written to An Bord
Pleanála indicating that it intends to apply for a change to two planning
conditions imposed by the planning board when it granted permission for a new
parallel runway last year.
Following a close and detailed examination of all 31 conditions set by the
Board, the DAA has concluded that Conditions 3 and 5 impose restrictions on
Dublin Airport that would significantly reduce its operational capacity at peak
travel periods and cause delays and inconvenience for airlines and
Condition 5 stipulates that when the new runway is brought into operation the
average number of aircraft landings and take-offs at Dublin Airport, "shall not
exceed 65 between the hours of 23.00-07.00."
Currently, an average of 72, landings and take-offs occur between these
hours. Consequently, Condition 5 would not only restrict the new runway’s
capacity to support future traffic growth at the Airport, but also the Airport's
current capacity with regard to schedules.
Condition 3 states that the new runway will not be used for take-off or
landings between the hours of 23.00-07.00. The period from 06.00-07.00 in the
morning is currently the busiest hour for flight departures at Dublin Airport,
while the period from 23.00 until midnight is amongst the busiest for
The number of departing aircraft during the 06.00-07.00 hour has doubled
since 2003 consequently this busy hour is already over-subscribed in terms of
slot allocation. Since our initial planning application in 2003 the two biggest
airlines at Dublin Airport have collectively added more than 110 new
routes/services including 70 new routes/services since 2006.
Not only would these planning conditions restrict flights at the airport
below current levels it also has the potential consequence that existing slots
could be withdrawn from many operators.
Commenting on the requirement to change Condition 3 and 5 Robert Hilliard,
Director of Dublin Airport said, "The delivery of a new parallel runway is of
national importance to the economy of the island of Ireland. While the DAA is
conscious of the concerns of some of Dublin Airport's neighbouring
communities, it also needs to ensure that it maintains an appropriate balance in
meeting the operating requirements of our airlines and passengers.
"Once an Environmental Impact Statement has been compiled the DAA will
arrange for copies to be made available to interested parties," Mr. Hilliard
The DAA's pre-application submission will now be assessed by An Bord Pleanála
under the Strategic Infrastructure Act to establish the appropriate procedural
path to a planning decision.
4th July, 2008
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