Motorists advised of road closures near Luton Airport as DART Gateway Bridge is installed

Drivers are being advised of upcoming road closures near London Luton Airport as the DART Gateway Bridge is installed.

The next milestone in the construction of the Direct Air-Rail Transit (DART) between Luton Airport Parkway and London Luton Airport takes place at the end November when a bridge will be installed across the A1081.

Construction of the Luton DART

Construction of the Luton DART

The installation means road closures will be in place from 8pm on Friday, November 29, until 5am on Monday, December 2.

The closure will be in both directions on the A1081, between the Percival Way roundabout and the B653 traffic lights, and from the Kimpton Road roundabout to the B653 traffic lights.

A signed diversion route will be in operation, which will take traffic via the A505 on Kimpton Road and Gypsy Lane. Vehicles will be able to join the A1081 at both ends of this diversion route, which will be closely monitored throughout the closure to ensure maximum traffic flow.

In order to minimise disruption to travellers, the DART Gateway Bridge has been built near to its point of installation by the Percival Way roundabout.

Construction of the Luton DART

Construction of the Luton DART

The bridge is 70m long, 20m wide and 16m tall, with an overall weight of over 1,000 tonnes. Specialist heavy duty movers will lift, transport and lower the bridge into position over the last weekend in November.

Once operational in 2021, the £225m Luton DART will take travellers from Luton Airport Parkway station to the terminal of London Luton Airport in under four minutes.

The project is being funded and delivered by Luton Council’s airport company, London Luton Airport Ltd (LLAL).

Passengers will be able to travel between St Pancras and London Luton Airport in 30 minutes using the fastest trains, then transferring easily to the Luton DART.

The scheme will be a double-shuttle, fully-automated people-mover, based on the latest system technology and design innovation, capable of operating 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

The cable-driven system is energy efficient and environmentally friendly. It will contribute to LLAL’s target of encouraging 45 per cent of all travellers to the airport to use public transport.

Ciaran Scanlon, LLAL Programme Delivery Director, said: “This is an exciting phase in the DART project and once installed the Gateway Bridge will be for many the most visible sign of the scheme’s progress.

“We appreciate that the closure of roads around the airport will cause inconvenience to many and apologise in advance for any delays caused.

"We would encourage road users to allow more time for their journeys as they arrive and depart from the airport.”