Dublin Airport Authority faces runway deadline

Crunch decisions ahead as planning permission for €250m project expires next year

Sources have suggested that the DAA could reapply for planning permission, but this time for a longer runway than the one for which it already has permission. Photograph:  Aidan Crawley/Bloomberg

Sources have suggested that the DAA could reapply for planning permission, but this time for a longer runway than the one for which it already has permission. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/Bloomberg

 

An Bord Pleanála gave the DAA permission to build a new 3,110m runway in August 2007, but the plan was put on hold as the recession hit numbers travelling through the airport.

Renewed growth and the airport’s bid to position itself as a transatlantic hub have put the €250 million project back on the DAA’s agenda.

However, permission for the development expires in August next year, leaving the DAA with a number of choices to make ahead of that deadline.

It could ask Fingal County Council to extend the 10-year period, which planning laws allow. Otherwise it will have to either begin work on the runway ahead of the deadline and bring it to the point where it is substantially complete or reapply for permission.

Sources have suggested that the DAA could reapply, but this time for a longer runway than the one for which it already has permission. This would allow it to cater for bigger long-haul craft.

Any reapplication is likely to take time as it would require an oral hearing. However, it could be made under strategic infrastructure legislation, which means that the fresh application would go straight to An Bord Pleanála.

The DAA did ask An Bord Pleanála to alter a condition attached to the original permit restricting flights in and out of the airport to 65 between 11pm and 7am.

It dropped this in 2009, but will now have to get this condition changed as demand at these hours is now around 99 flights.

More than 25 million people travelled through Dublin Airport in 2015.

Initial indications are that traffic this year will overtake that number.

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