Doncaster Sheffield details its masterplan and targets cargo tonnage growth

Doncaster Sheffield Airport (DSA) has detailed its 20-year plan to grow operations and is targeting cargo tonnage of more than 70,000 by 2037.

The growth target was revealed by the UK gateway yesterday in their ambitious Vision and Masterplan outlining the expected growth over the next 20 years.

Last year, DSA’s cargo volumes fell by 7.3 per cent to 8,656 tonnes, compared to the 9,625 tonnes in 2016, but the gateway can handle all types of freighters and has vast logistics capacity in terms of warehousing. Anglo World Cargo’s Cargo Terminal was expanded to 55,000 square foot at the end of 2017.

DSA chiefs said the plans realise the airport’s “full potential, delivering major international connectivity and economic benefit to Yorkshire, the surrounding regions and the UK”.

The ‘Vision’ highlights the airport’s cargo plans in line with the increased passenger growth, as the site has the ability to handle up to 250,000 tonnes of cargo per year.

This it said would support the UK’s international trade at a time “when no airports across the UK are significantly expanding cargo capacity”.

Plans also include the creation of an Aerotropolis in the Sheffield City Region with the airport’s 1600-acre site, known as Aero Centre Yorkshire, becoming a central hub.

The ‘airport city’ it said would help transform the North of England, creating 73,000 new jobs for the Sheffield City Region and provide exciting advanced manufacturing, logistics and aviation-led innovation opportunities. It is anticipated that the Vision would deliver £3.2 billion GVA per year by 2048 across the region.

A key component of the Vision is the addition of an airport rail station connected to the East Coast Mainline; requiring only 7 miles of new track, it could be open in just five years’ time. The station would provide a direct rail link to London and Newcastle in under 90 minutes travel time.

The operator is Peel Airports and chairman, Robert Hough said: “This is a Vision with a central pillar that delivers air connectivity, new housing, highly skilled employment, tourism and better rail connectivity at exceptional value for money, it is straightforward to build and deliverable in five years.

“It is of national significance for aviation and the economy, particularly the North, and we want to see it realised as soon as possible. This is required beyond what Heathrow expansion will deliver, with a range of benefits for the North and East of the country.”

The airport’s Masterplan detailing the future development of the current site and projected growth over the next 20 years will now go out for public consultation.