Plans to ease congestion at Manchester Airport have been announced that are designed to reduce overcrowding on it’s terminal forecourts.
In March, it was announced a forecourt management plan was being introduced, including the creation of a new drop-off zone, from where passengers will be transferred to all of its terminals free of charge.
Since announcing the plans, Manchester Airport has been listening to feedback and engaging with a range of interest groups as it finalises plans for the introduction of the system.
Those still wanting to be dropped-off directly outside the terminal buildings – and airport station – will still be able to do so, but will be charged £3 for five minutes and £4 for 10. There is no change to arrangements for picking people up, with those collecting passengers asked to park in the car parks at each terminal (£4 for 30 minutes).
Manchester Airport has confirmed arrangements for passengers with reduced mobility, local users of the airport station and commercial operators, such as private hire taxi firms:
- Blue badge holders will not pay to drop off
- Special Assistance passengers can use the drop-off zone free of charge
- Special scheme for local station users
- Discount scheme for private hire taxis and commercial operators
- Free option available with shuttle bus to all three terminals
- £3 charge for five minutes and £4 for 10
- Six figure public transport fund developed using the proceeds
Non-Blue Badge holders who have booked special assistance can use the free drop-off site, where there will be a dedicated help point to communicate with the airport’s assistance provider OCS. All buses travelling to and from the terminals from this location are wheelchair accessible.
A scheme for people living near to the airport who use its Ground Transport Interchange to travel in and out of Manchester and surrounding areas has also been developed, following discussions with stakeholders in these communities.
It allows people in certain postcodes to apply for a permit, giving them access to the station free of charge for an annual fee of £30. The postcodes covered are M22 0, M22 1, M22 4, M22 5, M22 8, M22 9, M23 0, M23 1, M23 2, M23 9, SK9 4, SK9 5, WA15 0, WA15 7, WA15 8, WA16 6, WA16 Further details can be found HERE (http://bit.ly/localresidents).
A discount scheme will also be set up for commercial private hire operators who are frequent users of the airport. The scheme already exists for pick-up within car parks and will now offer discounted access to the forecourts, for drop-off. The airport has been communicating directly with this group of users and will continue to do so. Further details can be found HERE (http://bit.ly/privatehireoperators).
Tricia Williams, COO of Manchester Airport, said:
“Manchester Airport has seen a significant increase in passenger volumes in the past five years and is heavily investing in further growth and improvements to the customer experience, most notably through our £1bn transformation programme.
“This growth, coupled with imposed security restrictions on forecourt capacity and an inability to increase available space, has led to extreme congestion around the estate, especially at peak times. It became clear we had to take a more proactive approach to managing this, as Manchester Airport continues to grow, which is why we are introducing a forecourt management system, including a dedicated free site for people to be dropped-off at.
“We have listened carefully to issues raised by passengers since announcing our plans and have been able to respond to many of the concerns raised through the measures being announced today.
“We will announce any further details, including the exact date the system will be introduced, at the earliest opportunity.”
Proceeds from the forecourt management scheme will go into a new public transport fund being set up by the airport. This will be used to support measures to improve access to our site for employment opportunities as well as passengers using public transport. The airport will be working in partnership with Cheshire East Council, the Greater Manchester Combined Authority and Transport for Greater Manchester to administer the fund.
The changes being introduced only impact those dropping-off. The process for picking up passengers remains the same. Passengers can be picked up in terminal car parks, as per the current process, with a charge of £4 for 30 minutes.
Passengers and airport users can find out more information about Plan to ease congestion at Manchester Airport here:
General website with maps – https://www.manchesterairport.co.uk/pick-up-and-drop-off-info/
Local residents accessing the station – http://bit.ly/localresidents
Private hire firms – http://bit.ly/privatehireoperators