The Challenge:

London Luton Airport caters for around 15 million passengers per year to over 150 destination across Europe, Africa and Asia and continues to expand it route network. The airport currently employs around 10,000 people and indirectly supports nearly 18,000 jobs, making it a major economic contributor to the UK. By 2020 the airport expects passenger capacity to grow to 18 million and is investing in developing and improving the passenger experience, improvements include:

  • Redesign of the terminal building to create a more passenger friendly experience
  • Doubling of the retail space and introducing new shopping and dining options
  • Doubling the size of the security search capacity, immigration and baggage reclaim areas
  • A new multi-story short-stay car park with 1,700 spaces

This project plays a vital role in the development of the airport and the improvement of the customer experience, in peak times the DART will depart the stations every 4 minutes.

The Solution:

The Luton DART (Direct Air – Rail Transport) project is a joint venture project between VolkerFitzpatrick and Kier known as VFK. VFK have been contracted by London Luton Airport Limited to construct the new state-of-the-art £225m, 2.1km guided mass passenger transit system linking the London Luton Airport terminal building to Luton Airport Parkway mainline station due to open in 2021. The project forms part of Luton Borough Council’s £1.5 billion Luton Investment Framework to transform Luton and secure long-term economic growth benefiting local business and ensuring the local community have access to high quality employment opportunities.

The scope of the project is the design, execution and completion of the Luton DART including:

  • DART Parkway and Central Terminal stations;
  • The Gateway Bridge;
  • The Viaduct;
  • Running Slab;
  • The Tunnel and approaches;
  • Maintenance area

The Impact:

The Luton DART project has a large social value ambition to support the economic development of the local area and has committed to the following:

Construction Skills Training Hub

  • Deliver construction specific training opportunities to over 750 Luton residents;
  • Provide up to 2 weeks relevant practical training to provide basic core skills that meet the needs of the industry;
  • Provide training opportunities to those from hard-to-reach, under-represented and disadvantaged groups;
  • Provide job opportunities, apprenticeships and work experience opportunities to those who successfully complete the training programmes.

National Skills Academy for Construction

  • Recruit 30 apprentices onto the Luton DART project;
  • Provide work experience opportunities for 25 people in education and 15 people outside education, training or employment;
  • Create 78 new jobs for local people on the project;
  • Attend at least 30 students careers information, advice and guidance events;
  • Provide training and qualification interventions of over 250 sub-contractor workforce
" As more and more passengers choose to travel through London Luton Airport, it has never been more important that they can reach the airport easily. The DART represents a great stride. To make the journey even better, we are also calling for the introduction of four fast trains per hour at Luton Airport Parkway station as part of the new East Midlands rail franchise. These developments will reduce the journey time from central London to under 30 minutes. "
Nick Barton CEO London Luton Airport

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