Airline boss critical of LBIA expansion - Leeds Bradford Airport News

Airport news for Leeds Bradford on 17/08/2009.

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The Jet2.com boss has been highly critical of the £28 million expansion plan for Leeds Bradford International Airport (LBIA) that was approved last week by Leeds councillors.

Philip Meeson, the airline’s chief executive, accused Bridgepoint, the owner of LBIA, of expanding the terminal to increasing shopping facilities so that it could recover the £140 million it spent purchasing the airport.

He has said that the extension should not be built at this time as it will increase the costs borne by not only his airline, but other airport tenants as well.

Meeson commented: “Bridgepoint bought the airport at the top of the market. They spent £140 million to buy it and so will be looking for ways to get that money back. The reason LBIA wants to extend the terminal is to create better shopping facilities as a cash generator.”

He added: “All airports are seeing a reduction in passenger numbers and I would question whether we need this extension now. The ring road is already crowded and there are not enough bus services to and from the airport. We need to have many more buses from all over the place and car parking charges should be kept down.”

The Jet2.com executive was also critical of the airport management over its lack of communication about the planned extension.

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