Coventry Airport: countdown to Gigafactory

The process to close Coventry Airport and build a Gigafactory to make electric car batteries has begun.

A consultation on the proposal was launched this morning, days after the pro-Mayor of the West Midlands, Andy Street, was reelected.

“At exactly 0900 this morning, we were notified of commencement of the formal consultation period and progression towards planning and as the attached clearly states, the closure of Coventry Airport,” one of the business owners at Coventry Airport told FLYER.

“Obviously, we need as many submissions from the community as possible to counter the proposal and point out it is not a step in the right direction in order [for the UK] to be the best country in the world for General Aviation.”

Gigafactory Coventry Airport

The consultation document says, “Coventry Airport has been identified as the preferred site for a West Midlands Gigafactory and an outline planning application is now being brought forward by a Joint Venture made up of Coventry City Council and Coventry Airport Ltd.

“Our proposals will create at least 4,500 jobs directly and tens of thousands more in the supply chain.”

The team behind the project, which includes the Rigby Group which operates the Airport, says it is unable to hold a public exhibition or event because of Covid restrictions.

However, there are two webinars coming up to engage with the project team. To take part, complete the registration form at the bottom of the home page of the Consultation website.

Feedback, comments and objections must be made by 6 June 2021 and can be made online.

Coventry Airport Gigafactory Consultation

Comments

  1. The first I’ve heard of it, like many others I presume. I find it amazing that a large scale project which will completely close the airfield has been proposed.

  2. I cannot believe that the proposed Giga Factory will need the ENTIRE airfield site. By reducing the amount land to that needed solely for GA purposes at Coventry, a large amount of land could and should be released for non-aviation purposes, more than sufficient for a well-planned, large-scale development. However, the current proposal is, in my view, a clever ploy to obtain change- of-use planning permission for the entire site, which sits in the Green Belt, so if Coventry does not win its bid to host the Giga Factory, which I suspect it may not, the developers will have already obtained change-of-use and be free develop the entire airfield site for warehousing and industrial units! Coventry needs support from the GA community NOW!

  3. I have nothing against a Gigafactory for batteries, Indeed welcome the investment in UK. However, one of the major reasons listed by the Project Team is, ‘there are no other sites available’. I just do not believe that statement. There are a myriad of brown field sites potentially available. That is set against the closure of yet another thriving GA airfield and once gone the cost of a new airfield will simply mean a decline in the aviation infrastructure forever.
    This example must be a prime example for the various bodies set up to guard against airfield closures and one of their first remits should be to examine closely that statement, ‘no other sites available’ and how it was arrived at.
    When the truth comes out the statement should probably read, ‘there are no other sites that we could buy at the price we are getting Coventry Airport for.’
    Second point. How many people are employed directly and indirectly at the current airport? This does not need to be a zero sum game, would it not be best to keep the airport and all those direct and indirect jobs AND have 4500 jobs in the area from another brown field or dare I say green field site to build this massive factory especially considering this is to build electric car batteries?
    I really hope there is a well run campaign to move this excellent project somewhere else – not on a precious airport site with loss of many jobs (not mentioned in the covering PR release) and never to be replaced airfield.

  4. ‘There is a national need to protect and enhance our strategic network of GA airfields,” said Aviation Minister, Robert Courts MP, in written statement to the UK Parliament yesterday.‘
    Statement to Parliament, 29 April 2021, by Rt Hon Robert Courts MP, Aviation Minister. Well Mr Courts time to turn words into action and examine why another precious busy GA airfield is about to be lost forever under the lead argument ‘no other sites available’.

  5. With Didcot Power Station A site now cleared and ready for use – this would make a far better location for the GIGA factory. With its very convenient adjacent road and rail links – it has infrastructure on its doorstep and its in an area already zoned for this kind of development.

    Didcot is the better choice.

    Coventry Airport? Maybe not so much.

  6. bad news
    how can you allow a way of life to be suddenly changed.
    I was led to believe that our airfields would be protected, a fallacy it would seem.
    there has been a continua’s attack on British manufacturing over the last 40 years, a constant run down, negative thinking. There are lots of industrial sites available, why not use those sites.
    something has to change, the banking, taxation, incentive. allot is missing and has been allowed to disappear. ministers must look and find a away to make British engineering and manufacturing work for us here at home in England.

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