1.6 million passengers flew through London Luton Airport (LLA) in August, a 6.8% rise compared with August 2016 and the 41st consecutive month of growth for LLA.
2017 also marked the busiest summer in the airport’s 79-year history. In total, 4.7 million passengers travelled through the airport between June and August, a 7% increase compared with the same period last year.
To meet this continued demand LLA is carrying out the single biggest investment in its history to transform the airport and increase annual capacity by 50% by 2020. Since construction began in 2016 passengers have benefitted from an expanded security search area, new multi-storey car park and new shops and restaurants. A new dual carriageway access road has also helped to alleviate congestion to and from the airport.
Upgrading transport links to LLA is central to the transformation. The airport is working with the Department for Transport (DfT) and rail operators to secure a dedicated airport express-style rail service as part of the upcoming East Midlands rail refranchising process.
In addition, plans by the airport’s owner for a £200 million mass passenger transit (MPT) system linking the airport terminal with Luton Airport Parkway station have recently received approval. Once complete, it will operate 24 hours a day and replace the current shuttle bus.
Nick Barton, CEO of LLA, said: “This summer we welcomed a record number of passengers to the airport, highlighting our continued popularity with business and leisure travellers alike.
“Upgrading our transport links is essential to meeting this demand. We want to create an express-style service with four fast trains per hour, which will speed up our passengers’ journeys and provide essential capacity. It will also allow us to make Luton Airport Parkway station an integrated transport hub which will benefit the UK, the Three Counties region and bring us in line with the other major London airports.”