History of London City Airport

London City Airport is a relatively new airport that opened in 1987 to serve the financial center of London. It is located in the Docklands area of East London, close to Canary Wharf and the City of London. Despite its small size, the airport has grown in popularity over the years and is now an important transport hub for business and leisure travelers.

Early Years of London City Airport

The idea for the airport came about in the early 1980s when the government recognized the need for a new airport to serve the financial district of London. The Docklands area of East London was chosen as the location for the airport because it was relatively underdeveloped and had the space required for an airport. The airport was also seen as a way to regenerate the area and create new jobs.

Construction of the airport began in 1986 and was completed in just over a year. The first flight from London City Airport took off on November 5, 1987, to Paris. The airport was initially only served by a few airlines, including British Airways and CityJet. However, over the years, more airlines began to use the airport, and new routes were added.

One of the reasons for the airport’s success is its location. It is just 6 miles east of the City of London and 3 miles from Canary Wharf, making it easily accessible for business travelers. The airport is also close to the financial districts of Frankfurt and Amsterdam, making it an ideal hub for connecting flights to these cities.

In 1995, London City Airport was sold to a consortium of investors, which included the Irish airline Aer Lingus. The new owners invested heavily in the airport, improving the facilities and adding new routes. They also introduced a new marketing campaign to promote the airport as a fast and convenient alternative to the other London airports.

In 2002, the airport underwent a major expansion, which included the construction of a new terminal building and runway extension. The new terminal was designed to provide passengers with a more pleasant and efficient airport experience. It features state-of-the-art facilities, including a business center, a lounge, and a range of shops and restaurants.

Today, London City Airport is one of the fastest-growing airports in Europe, with over 5 million passengers passing through its doors each year. The airport is served by a range of airlines, including British Airways, KLM, Lufthansa, and Swiss International Air Lines. It offers direct flights to over 40 destinations in Europe and the United States, including Amsterdam, Berlin, Dublin, Frankfurt, Geneva, Madrid, Milan, New York, Paris, and Zurich.

In recent years, the airport has faced some challenges. In 2019, the airport was forced to close for several days due to the discovery of an unexploded World War II bomb in the nearby River Thames. The closure caused significant disruption to passengers and airlines.

The COVID-19 pandemic also had a significant impact on the airport, with passenger numbers plummeting as travel restrictions were introduced. However, the airport has remained open throughout the pandemic, providing vital transport links for essential travel.

The Future of London City Airport

Looking to the future, London City Airport has ambitious plans for growth. In 2020, the airport announced a £500 million expansion plan, which includes the construction of a new terminal building, the extension of the existing runway, and the creation of new taxiways and aircraft stands. The expansion will enable the airport to accommodate up to 6.5 million passengers each year by 2025.

In conclusion, London City Airport has come a long way since it first opened in 1987. It has become an important transport hub for business and leisure travelers, thanks to its convenient location, modern facilities, and range of destinations. With its ambitious expansion plans, the airport looks set to continue to grow and thrive in the years