This on the back of comments from Terence Conran, designer of Terminal 1, who highlighted the 'bazaar atmosphere that now pervades its terminals'; and the criticism by its chief executive Tony Douglas, who quit two weeks ago after saying the airport was 'held together by sticking plaster' and not going to improve till Terminal 5 opens in March 2008.
To us at MT, Heathrow may hardly be the kind of place any sane person would choose to spend time in, but is it really any worse than arriving at New York through JFK? And the depressing experience of that airport hasn't done anything to harm New York's status as an international mega-city. Dubai's much-hyped airport, meanwhile, is little more than a bling-to-the-max shopping centre. As a transport gateway it's no better than any other. And as cities, London and Dubai are hardly comparable in terms of stature.
All of which smacks of grandstanding on the part of the new government. Granted, every politician has to play to the crowd, but we can't help feeling Heathrow owner BAA has more pressing concerns. For a look at the airport operator's troubles, click here.