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WRLtH makes airport access easier

Unlike the vast majority of international airports, Heathrow only has rail access is one direction; towards London. This misses an opportunity for passengers and employees to conveniently access the airport via rail from the west.

Heathrow is the busiest airport in the UK and handles the most international passengers in the world.

  • It handles 67 million passengers each year
  • The Thames Valley area near Heathrow is densely populated, providing around 750,000 jobs and contributing £28 billion to the exchequer.

WRLtH will get airport passengers to where they need to be in the UK more quickly and reliably than currently, while reducing congestion for local residents and businesses.

What the evidence tells us?

  • 75% of businesses in the Thames Valley cite Heathrow as the most important location factor

According to the Highways Agency road links around Heathrow are either approaching, or are at capacity and businesses highlight this as a limiting factor to further investment in the area, while local residents face travel uncertainty.

  • By 2026 the majority of the M4 to Reading, parts of the M3 and the western sections of the M25 will have reached severe congestion levels and will present a significant barrier to reliable road travel
  • Based on current usage trends, and without significant infrastructure investment, the Thames Valley alone could lose £34 billion worth of output over the next 20 years
  • For the whole of the south west, west midlands and south Wales the figure rises to £50 billion and 50,000 jobs.

If access to Heathrow deteriorates, it will cost the economy in lost productivity and negatively impact on the passenger experience. It is for these reasons that maintaining fast and reliable transport between Heathrow and the rest of the Thames Valley is critical.

Can you think of other ways WRLtH could benefit you or a business? Tell us about it here so we can continue to make a strong case to Government.