18 APRIL 2016


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Article from BTNews 18 APRIL 2016

Luton rail link plan

To applause from the audience in the St Pancras Hotel, Andy Malcolm, chair of Luton Airport, this week announced plans for a new mass passenger transit system connecting the airport to the Parkway station, writes Andrew Sharp

In an interview with BTN, airport chief executive Nick Barton said the transit would start from the airport end of the station overbridge and run parallel to the railway before crossing the main road to the airport and going through the mid-stay car park.

It would then go underground by the fire station before surfacing at the departures building.

Plans are “technology neutral”, with Malcolm showing a slide of the Dubai Metro and the information pack showing California’s Oakland Connector as comparisons. 

Prospective contractors, who are being selected shortly, will be encouraged to produce their own solutions. 

The driverless system is planned to run every 2-3min in the peak, and every 5-6min off-peak, compared with every 10min for the current shuttle buses. Journey time is expected to be substantialy quicker, more reliable and the ride quality very much better.

A planning application will be made this summer: the system should be open by 2020.  www.london-luton.co.uk

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OUR READERS' FINEST WORDS (All times and dates are GMT)

All comments are filtered to exclude any excesses but the Editor does not have to agree with what is being said. 100 words maximum

Josephine Bacon, London, UK

The refurbishment of Luton Airport is currently proceeding apace but with absolutely no consideration for passengers, it is a total mess! At Heathrow, when similar work was undertaken attempts were made to cause minimum passenger disruption, but not at Luton. Also, the fee charged for dropping off passengers is a disgrace, especially with the diisruption to the outside of the building which forces passengers to trudge through endless mud to get to the terminal. If I can avoid going to Luton I do. Unfortunately, I had to use the airport three weeks ago.

Graham Stephenson, France, Bordeaux

Luton's rail Link. I was Director Development for the Airport Authority in 1981 and we were working on a plan for a MAGLEV (Magnetic Levitation) rail link which was feasible and did not present a major problem. It was therefore interesting to read that more than 30 years later the link is again on the cards. One can only ask why it has taken so long?