With Heathrow Airport’s new Terminal 5 (T5) scheduled to open in March, the British Airport Authority (BAA) has expressed concern that delays in vital mechanical and electrical (M&E) work will make customer experience inferior to that at Heathrow’s existing terminals.

With T5 scheduled to open in March, BAA are concerned delays in the work will make customer experience inferior to that of the airport’s existing terminals.

Earlier this month, BAA introduced stringent security checks on M&E workers entering the site, resulting in long queues and chaos.

The original T5 budget underestimated the need for electricians working on M&E by three million man-hours.

T5 has faced a series of problems, including an eight-year wait for planning permission following the longest public enquiry of its type in British history.

Over 700 conditions were imposed on the project, including an archaeological dig.

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By GlobalData

Since work began in 2002, T5 construction has been hampered by a leaking roof, 50 electricians walking of the site in February 2005, a steelworker strike in October 2005 and a further strike by 900 civil engineers in November of the same year.

The new T5 and one of its satellites will open in March and a second satellite will be completed in 2011, in time for the Olympic Games in London, boosting Heathrow’s capacity by 30 million passengers a year.

By Louis Makiello