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Luton airport to announce major expansion plan

A £110m extension will see expansion, modernisation and remodelling of the terminal building

Pictured: Luton airport will announce a major expansion plan

London Luton Airport Limited (LLAL), a company owned by Luton Council, is expected to announce a major expansion plan to double the size of the facility over the next decade.The expansion will increase the annual capacity of the airport by 50 per cent to 18 million passengers a year by 2020. It will also significantly improve the passenger experience at the terminal.

The airport has confirmed plans for a 1.4-mile light rail link connecting Parkway Station with the airport due to be operational by 2021. A £110m extension will see expansion, modernisation and remodelling of the terminal building and will be conducted in three phases.

The expansion will double the existing capacity in areas including security search, immigration and baggage reclaim.It will create space to accommodate up to 20 security passenger screening lanes and 15 immigration lanes, as well as eight international passenger reclaim belts and one domestic belt.The existing retail space will be doubled to more than 8,700sqm and will feature new shopping and dining options. It will incorporate 43 new retail spaces, built over 7,000sqm.

A new £1m executive lounge will be developed with snooze pods and spa facilities alongside the new retail space. Additional capacity will be provided for seating and circulation in the departures lounge areas.

Another significant improvement to the terminal building will be the construction of a new two-storey pier (Pier B) for boarding and disembarking. An associated link building will also be constructed to the southeast of the main terminal building.The pier will serve arrivals and departures by upgrading the four existing remote stands and contact stands. Four new remote stands will also be created with four new pre-board and business zones.

The £110m redevelopment project is critical for meeting the increasing air travel demand in London, the South East and South Midlands over the next two decades.

According to a report published by Oxford Economics, an independent  consultancy, the project will add £1bn to the UK economy and create approximately 10,000 jobs by 2030.

More positive news is that talks are under way to extend the validity of the London Oyster card to the terminal. The DfT says it is will be valid for travel on Thameslink by 2018.

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