Heathrow Airport has upped the sum that could go towards residents' noise insulation costs from £250m to £700m if a proposed new runway goes ahead.
Following a local public consultation, Heathrow’s offer expands on previous proposals and levels similar schemes provided by other European hub airports such as Schiphol, Madrid, Charles de Gaulle and Frankfurt.
The insulation package could include acoustic double glazing, ceiling overboarding in bedrooms and loft insulation.
“We designed the new approach to expanding Heathrow to minimise noise to local residents, but we also need to mitigate the impact on those who are still affected,” said John Holland-Kaye, chief executive at Heathrow, in a statement.
“Today’s announcement does that, and is based on the feedback we have received from local residents over the last few months; it will reduce the impact of noise, and treat local people fairly.”
Two new zones have been drawn up making people eligible for the scheme regardless of whether they experience noise under existing flight paths or will be newly affected by noise from a new runway.
More than 160,000 homes could benefit from it in Berkshire, Surrey and London, while some will be able to claim back the full costs and those further out could get up to £3,000.
A third-party assessment would be made to determine the extent of each home’s needs within the eligible insulation zones.
The expansion will benefit local residents, Holland-Kaye said, creating 40,000 new skilled jobs and 10,000 apprenticeships.
Heathrow Airport submitted a revised plan to the Airports Commission, following the one in May 2014, for a new runway to the north-west of the airport after consultation with stakeholders across the UK.