Business welcomes green light for London Luton Airport’s expansion plansDec 23, 2013
The Department for Communities and Local Government will now consider whether the application should be determined by the Secretary of State or whether the council can proceed to issue the consent.
However, business leaders in Bedfiordshire and Luton South MP Gavin Shuker have described the decision as critical for the local economy.
Bedfordshire Chamber of Commerce says the expansion will generate up to 5,000 new jobs and bring £218 million a year into the county’s economy.
The plans, which will increase London Luton’s capacity from 12 million to 18 million passengers a year, feature:
- An expanded and modernised terminal with up to 20 security lanes, 15 immigration lanes and nine baggage belts;
- Incre;sed retail, catering, circulation and seating areas;
- A new two-storey pier;
- Dualling the road from the Holiday Inn roundabout to a newly configured road system in front of the Central Terminal Area;
- A new parallel taxiway to unlock capacity for an additional 6 million passengers a year from the existing runway;
- A new multi-storey car park.
Airport maaging director Glyn Jones said: “We have committed to developing an airport which everyone in the local area will be proud of, and passengers from all over the world will enjoy visiting.”
Bedfordshire Chamber chief executive Cheryl Smart said: “Whether you work in business, or are looking for a job, this is exciting news and important to the local economy.”
MP Gavin Shuker said: “This is a great day for the town, and a much needed boost for our local economy.
"London Luton has returned over £210 million in concession payments to the council since 1998, and it is good news for local taxpayers that these are set to increase between now and 2031 as the airport develops.”
Budget airline easyJet is the largest carrier to use the airport, which also houses its headquarters.
UK commercial manager High Aitken said “Luton was easyJet’s first base in 1995 and remains our spiritual home. This decision is an important step in helping Luton to realise its potential and enabling it to play a greater role in serving the transport needs of North London.
“We look forward to working with the airport and seeing the plans develop.”