Transport: building permit issued for the extension of Nice airport

The state announced Tuesday that it has issued a building permit for the extension of Nice airport, the second in France after those in Paris. A project that is causing environmental controversy, with opponents considering legal action.

Nice Airport is definitely going to grow. The State officially granted the building permit for the extension project on 25 000 m2. It plans to build a new check-in hall, a baggage sorting area and additional boarding rooms. Côte d ' Azur, a region very popular with foreign tourists, would see its total surface pass to 97 000 square meters.

Noise and Natura 2000

The Alpes-Maritimes prefecture said in a statement Tuesday that it had granted this building permit on 20 December. “However, there are two obligations (…), namely compliance with the noise exposure plan and optimal integration of the project into the surrounding landscape. “

Other reservations formulated in the investigation report, notably relating to the monitoring of avifauna in the neighboring Natura protection zone 2000 or to the study and monitoring of emissions of greenhouse gases, are the subject of a letter to the airport authorities.

A contested project

For the supporters of the project , the extension must make it possible to optimally accommodate passengers, the number of 13, 85 millions in 2018 ( 4.1% in one year).

Opponents believe on the contrary that this enlargement will generate a large increase in air traffic, by more than 50 % in the next ten years according to the Citizen Collective 06, even though this mode of transport is criticized by environmentalists. “On the merits , this project is totally inconsistent with all the climate emergency issues, “said Airy Chrétien, co-founder of this collective. “We are determined to go to litigation in the coming days, we are currently working on the possible remedies before the administrative justice”, he added.

Privatized in 2016, Nice Côte d'Azur Airport is controlled at 64% by a consortium associating the Italian company Atlantia (ex-Autostrade, subsidiary of the Benetton group and manager of Rome airport), EDF Invest and Monaco. The round table also includes the Nice Chamber of Commerce and Industry (25%) and local communities.

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