Luton Airport rail link: Council consulted over planning

Kimpton Road, pictured, leads up to the airport from Parkway station
Kimpton Road, pictured, leads up to the airport from Parkway station

Luton Airport is now at the beginnings of the planning process for its ambitious project to create a rail link to Parkway station, we can reveal.

The airport’s owner, London Luton Airport Ltd, has applied to the council for its opinion on whether an environmental impact assessment will be needed for its final proposals.

This ‘screening’ process often takes place before large scale developments which may have significant effects on the environment.

LLAL’s application for an EIA screening opinion centres around Stirling Place, Kimpton Road and the airport– indicating that any rail link will be built to the back of the station.

Under current plans a new hotel/casino will be built on Stirling Place as part of the overarching Napier Park scheme.

Last week the Luton News revealed that exploratory work on a new transport link is ‘well advanced’.

The journey between the main terminal and Parkway is currently served by a shuttle bus service.

Neil Slaven, easyJet’s commercial director, told us that he hopes the construction on the project can start in 2018 or 2019.

He said: “I think for Luton to really come into the top tier of airports it needs improvement and we believe it would be great for passengers.

“We are working closely with the council and the airport...I have really made the point that to operate Luton at its full potential there needs to be a mass passenger transport system.

“They have done a great job of looking at the options on the table but a final decision is still to be made.”

Luton Borough Council’s regeneration and transformation portfolio holder, Cllr Sian Timoney, added that ‘everyone is on the same page’ to ensure the transport link goes ahead.

A spokesperson for London Luton Airport Ltd was unavailable for comment when contacted by the Luton News.