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Heathrow will re-route rivers and roads to meet expansion plans

HEATHROW’s expansion plan that includes diverting rivers, moving local roads and rerouting the M25 through a tunnel under the new runway was slammed as “laughable” by campaigners today.

A four-phase “masterplan” was unveiled on Tuesday ahead of a 12-week consultation for feedback on the airport’s proposals which include a third runway by 2026.

Facilities such as Harmondsworth Primary School and Heathrow Special Needs Centre would also be moved to new locations in the first phase.

Stop Heathrow Expansion campaign co-ordinator Robert Barnstone called the plans “laughable.”

He said: “Not only does it want to disrupt people’s lives for up to 30 years whilst building this new runway, but now proposes jumbo-size car parks whilst pledging to reduce the number of people using cars at the airport.”

The government agreed to support the scheme for expanding Heathrow last year. Campaigners, backed by London Mayor Sadiq Khan, lost a High Court challenge against the decision last month but have vowed to continue their opposition.

Mr Khan urged people across the capital to have their say during the 12-week consultation and warned that a third runway would be an environmental disaster for London.

The RAC cautioned that the M25 works could mean “years of significant disruption” for motorists. It warned that there must be extra capacity around the airport to cater for what will be “an inevitable increase” in car journeys.

Unite, which represents airport workers, said the plan couples the creation of 77,000 new jobs and 5,000 apprenticeships with environmental considerations through its proposals for an ultra-low emission zone and on air quality in and around the airport.

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