Work begins on busway route’s concrete base

THE first concrete beams were laid on the route of the controversial Luton Dunstable Busway on Monday morning.

The first pre-cast concrete beams, manufactured in Luton, were laid on the route near Church Street, Dunstable.

At 13.4km, the new busway will be the second longest in the world, and the longest in an urban environment

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Councillor Roy Davis, responsible for regeneration in Luton, said: “This was an exciting landmark in delivery of the Luton Dunstable Busway which confirms the excellent progress that is being made on the ground.

“The busway will offer all the connectivity of a bus with the speed of a train. Buses will run not only along the main corridor itself but also reach out into the community and serve 265 bus stops away from the main route across Luton and Dunstable.

“The busway offers an unrivalled opportunity to change people’s local travel habits by providing a high-tech public transport service that will reach deep into our communities.”

Luton Borough Council says the busway is predicted to reduce journey times by half between Houghton Regis, Dunstable, Luton town centre and Luton Airport.

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Councillor Brian Spurr, in charge of sustainable communities services at Central Bedfordshire Council, said: “We are building the busway in order to reduce congestion and dramatically reduce journey times across Luton and Dunstable, and we’re delighted that the scheme is making good progress.

“Our contractors have been busy for many months previously, preparing the route and clearing major structures.

“It’s wonderful now to be able to see the busway itself taking shape before our eyes.”

It is anticipated that more than 4,700 of the six-metre long concrete beams will be used on the busway.

Pre-cast for 12 hours in purpose-built moulds, the precision-engineered beams are cured for 28 days and accurate to within 2mm.