Alcochete airport option on again
After the Government’s plans to build a secondary Lisbon international airport on the South bank of the River Tagus at Montijo were scuppered by ANAC (Portugal’s National Civil Aviation Authority), it is now revisiting the nearby Alcochete option.
ANAC has halted the airport’s construction over environmental issues and the government has now launched a Strategic Environmental Evaluation, but says it is still committed to the Montijo option.
After taking note of ANAC’s position, which is based on the failure to get a positive report from all of the municipal councils in the Greater Lisbon boroughs affected by the new airport at Montijo, the Ministry of Infrastructures and Housing has revealed that it will “advance with a Strategic Environmental Evaluation within the framework of expanding the airport capacity in the Lisbon region”.
This evaluation will “provide a comparative study of the various solutions for the different airport infrastructures in the region,” maintaining the Montijo option, but revisiting a solution that had been discarded – Alcochete.
Three solutions will be compared:
The current dual solution in which Humberto Delgado Airport (Portela) will have the status of Lisbon’s main airport and Montijo will be the complementary airport.
An alternative dual solution in which Montijo Airport will gradually acquire the status of Lisbon’s main airport while Humberto Delgado will be the complementary airport.
The construction of a new Lisbon International airport at the Alcochete Firing Range (Campo de Tiro de Alcochete) in an option that would create a large new international airport from scratch.
In 2019, the then minister of Planning and Infrastructures, Pedro Marques said that the solution that had been taken in 2008 by the José Sócrates government would not work since it would be more than an hour’s distance from Lisbon, near Coruche.
“We haven’t the money to pay for it and we haven’t got political consensus,” said the minister at the time, who went on to become a PS Socialist party Euro MP.
Now, in order to have the airport at Montijo, the government may have to change the law and would require the support of the centre-right PSD party in order to do so.