London’s Heathrow Airport is celebrating its 70th anniversary. The airport opened commercial services in 1946. Today over 70 million people pass through Heathrow Airport every year. It services 180 destinations in 90 countries. Over 93% of all passengers are international travellers. In 2015, Heathrow was the world’s sixth largest airport.
Heathrow,originally named London airport, lies 14 miles (22 km) west of central London . Construction of a military airport began in 1944. By the time it was finished the war had ended and Heathrow was turned over to civil authorities. The first passenger plane flew to Buenos Aires. In its first year of operation, 60000 passengers travelled through Heathrow Airport.
As time went on Heathrow grew and grew. In the last 10 years the airport has invested billions of dollars in modernising facilities for travellers.
Last year Terminal 1 was closed to make way for a modernised Terminal 2, which was reopened in 2014. Currently, the airport has two runways but there are plans for the construction of a third runway for Europe’s busiest airport.
- anniversary = day on which an important event happened years ago
- celebrate = to show that a day in history is important by doing something special on it
- civil authorities = organisation that belongs to the public, not the military
- commercial service = here: people pay money for travelling to and from other places
- construction = building something
- currently = at the moment
- destination = place to travel to
- facility = place or building that you use for something special
- invest = here: to spend money to make it better
- operation = here: in use
- originally = at first
- reopen = open again after being closed for some time
- runway = long flat piece of ground on which planes take off and land
- service = to provide something that people need