Scotland’s busiest airport is to build a new access road because the only current route is “absolutely at the edge of capacity”.
Fast-growing Edinburgh said it would contribute millions of pounds to the project to end traffic jams stretching back onto the A8.
Chief executive Gordon Dewar said it planned to spearhead the project to cut congestion on the current Eastfield Road access road.
This is made even worse during major events at the nearby Royal Highland Showground like the Royal Highland Show.
Mr Dewar said the road would also be a catalyst for building the long-awaited international business gateway business park nearby.
The airport is growing at more than ten per cent a year, with passenger numbers expected to reach a record 12 million this year.
Mr Dewar told an Edinburgh Chamber of Commerce event yesterday: “We are absolutely at the edge of our surface access capacity.
“The tram and forthcoming Gogar tram-train interchange are fantastic stuff but fundamentally, we do not have a road access solution yet.
“We may very soon be in the position of Edinburgh Airport building public roads. This is a real cusp moment.”
Mr Dewar told The Scotsman later the airport would be a “significant contributor” to the project, but no route or cost had been determined. He said a link to the M8 would eventually be required.
He said: My biggest worry is if there is a significant accident on Eastfield Road, there is no other route into the airport.”
Institute of Advanced Motoroists RoadSmart motoring group policy director Neil Greig said: “A dedicated slip road is long overdue, so this is fantastic news for the many who have no choice but to drive to the airport.”
A city council spokeswoman said: “We support the principle of a secondary access to the airport that is consistent with the aim of the local development plan to develop an international business gateway.”
“We are in discussions with the airport to bring forward a comprehensive and deliverable package of transport improvements.”