Planning policy and the Local Plan

London City Airport

Background to London City Airport

London City Airport is a privately owned business operating scheduled (publicly accessible) flights and business aviation.

As the local planning authority the council has a range of controls on the operation of the airport.

London City Airport’s operations are also regulated by a range of other bodies at a national and international level. These include the Civil Aviation Authority, the National Air Traffic Services and the Department for Transport. Some areas of the airport’s operations, such as in relation to aircraft noise, are regulated by more than one regulatory body.

CADP Planning Permission

The City Airport Development Programme (‘CADP’) is the planning permission that London City Airport operates under. The CADP Planning Permission was granted in 2016 by the Secretaries of State for Transport and Communities and Local Government following a public inquiry.  All of the background to this planning permission including the decision notice and the section 106 agreement can be accessed from Newham Council’s planning register using the reference 13/01228/FUL. The Permission includes physical works to extend the terminal, as well as controls on the operation of the airport.

The planning permission aims to mitigate the airport’s impact on the local environment, including in terms of noise, air quality and surface access – these controls and mitigations are set out in conditions set out in the decision notice or obligations in the  associated section 106 agreement, which.

The council employs a dedicated resource to monitor the airport’s compliance with their planning controls.  The council’s airport monitoring officer is the first point of contact for queries related to the airport’s consented operations.

Airport Constraints Map

To help developers or land owners consider the impacts of the airport when they are in the early stages of planning their developments the council has published a map with all of the spatial constraints about the airport in one place.

The London City Airport Constraints map comprises the safeguarding, full use noise contours and public safety zones.

You can see where these constraints are relevant and in force on the layers of this interactive map.


The Aerodrome Safeguarding Map for London City Airport was published by the Civil Aviation Authority in October 2004. It shows how different parts of Newham are affected and indicates when proposals for development above specified heights should be referred to London City Airport for consultation.

The Airport states that ‘birds are the greatest threat to aircraft at any aerodrome.’ In certain circumstances therefore, Airport operational requirements may restrict some biodiversity interventions in order to discourage bird attractants and minimise bird strikes.

While it has no formal planning status, London City Airport has issued guidance on this topic, which should be considered as a starting point for discussions around how relevant Local Plan Policies (SC3 and SC4 in particular) should be implemented in relevant areas.

View Safeguarding Map

Please note that:  

  • Restrictions on biodiversity do not mean that measures to promote biodiversity cannot be incorporated into a development scheme. 
  • In relation to development plan policies and our assessment of planning applications, the Airport guidance carries no ‘weight’.  

Read the guidance on the London City Airport website.

Full Use Noise Contours 

The interactive map shows forecast noise levels in terms of decibel contours to inform planning applicants in those relevant areas that the design of buildings and open spaces should include appropriate measures to mitigate the forecast noise levels.

The 2023 Full Use Contour gives an indication of the maximum extent that the noise contour could reach under the current CADP Planning Permission.

Public Safety Zones

Development within the designated Public Safety Zones is extremely restricted. Guidance on what type of development might be acceptable or unacceptable in principle should refer to the Department for Transport Policy Paper ‘Control of development in airport public safety zones’ (October 2021).

Annual Performance Reports      

London City Airport is required to publish an Annual Performance Report (‘APR’) reporting compliance against the requirements of the planning permission, annually by the 30 June. The APR’s are available on the airport’s website.

London City Airport website.

Newham Council’s Strategic Development Committee receives a report from the Airport Monitoring Officer reviewing the APR each autumn, summarising the airport’s performance in operating in accordance with the CADP Planning Permission.

Sound Insulation Scheme

London City Airport are required to operate a Sound Insulation Scheme and Construction Sound Insulation Scheme by the CADP Section 106 Agreement. Residential buildings and public buildings surrounding the airport in Newham, Tower Hamlets and Greenwich may be eligible for this scheme depending on their location and age of the property. Where a property is eligible, the airport will install sound insulation or make a financial contribution towards the installation of sound insulation to mitigate against aircraft noise.  The airport are also required to operate two noise insulation payment schemes and a purchase offer scheme. Please refer to the airport’s website for full details of the schemes and how they operate.

Please contact the Council’s Airport Monitoring Officer if you believe you are eligible and have not been offered an installation‘

Contact the Airport Monitoring Officer