London mayor Boris Johnson has refused to back down over his plans to develop an island airport in the Thames Estuary.
Johnson reaffirmed his long-term commitment to the scheme - dubbed “Boris Island” - to the London Assembly last week.
He said that Birmingham Airport could also offer a viable solution to the capital’s need for air capacity.
“There is spare capacity at Birmingham - enough to take another 9M passengers - and it is something we should be talking about,” he said, adding that the case was made stronger by the idea of building a high speed rail link to cut travel times between the two cities.
“It is something we are going to look into, study and model and discuss with the government,” said Johnson.
“But I think it would be wrong of us not to look at all possible solutions to London’s long-term aviation needs,” he said, referring to the Thames Estuary airport plans.
“I am working very carefully, methodically, logically to advance the proposition. You cannot simply rely on Heathrow forever and there is not going to be a third runway.”
The new coalition government has ruled that there will be no third runway or sixth terminal at Heathrow, and no new runways at Gatwick or Stansted.