Unsupported browser

For a better experience please update your browser to its latest version.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Now Foster rethinks Heathrow

  • Comment

The scale of Norman Foster’s infrastructure vision for the UK expanded last week when the 76-year-old starchitect claimed his plan to build a £50 billion hub airport in the Thames Estuary should be funded by the closure of Heathrow

During a University of Oxford lecture, Foster revealed a grand plan that would see the UK’s busiest airport sold to raise £12 billion or ‘50 per cent of the new airport’.

So, what would he have become of Heathrow? The 1,200-hectare west London site ‘could become an equivalent to California’s Silicon Valley’, combining a university, commercial and special economic zones, a technology park, entertainment spaces and ‘incredible green lungs’.

If any further convincing was required, Foster also pointed out the ‘risk and noise’ caused by Heathrow which he explained: ‘[Is] one of the very few airports in the world which is over-flown by its final approach, over a city of some seven million people.’ Citing the 2008 crash-landing of a British Airways flight from Beijing, he added: ‘If that had happened one minute earlier, then it defies the imagination the carnage that would have resulted from it.’


While welfare remains a principal concern, if this grand vision were built it would certainly lend an added cash benefit to the architect. Last week, Foster shelled out $21.9 million (£13.9 million) for a historic farmhouse and estate on the prestigious Massachusetts island of Martha’s Vineyard. President Barack Obama has rented Blue Heron Farm for the past three summers and Bill and Hillary Clinton attended a dinner party there in 2008. Astragal awaits an invite.

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.

Related Jobs

AJ Jobs