Luton Airport Parkway railway station
|Luton Airport Parkway|
Aerial photo of the station with airport shuttle buses waiting in front
|Location||Park Town, Luton|
|Local authority||Borough of Luton|
|Number of platforms||4|
|National Rail annual entry and exit|
|– interchange||0.127 million|
|– interchange||0.119 million|
|November 1999||Station opened|
|London transport portal|
Luton Airport Parkway railway station is on the Midland Main Line in England, serving south Luton and Luton Airport in Bedfordshire. It is situated in Park Town, Luton, and is 29 miles 19 chains (47.1 km) down the line from London St Pancras between Harpenden to the south and Luton to the north. Its three-letter station code is LTN, also the IATA code for the airport.
It is situated approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) west of the airport, to which it is linked by a chargeable shuttle bus service.
The station was opened in 1999, specifically to serve Luton Airport. Initially it was linked to the airport by free shuttle buses operated by National Car Parks on behalf of the airport's owners. In January 2008 the free shuttle bus service was replaced by a more frequent, but chargeable, service provided by First Capital Connect. Now that Govia are once again operating Thameslink, the service is planned to revert to being free.
In November 2008, the station became the first on the Thameslink route to have its platforms extended in order to accommodate twelve-coach trains as part of the Thameslink Programme. In April 2013, a new northern entrance was opened on Kimpton Road, Luton.
Luton DART, a 1.4-mile (2.3 km) light rail link is planned to link Luton Airport Parkway station to the airport. The £200 million link, scheduled to open in 2021, is being funded by Luton Borough Council and will be designed by the engineering firm Arup. The link will be operated 24 hours a day by an automated guided people mover which would offer a 5-minute transfer time between Parkway station and the airport terminal. The major challenge faced by railway engineers building a rail link here is that the railway station, although located adjacent to the airport perimeter, lies around 40 metres downhill from the airport. The project will involve the construction of bridges over the neighbouring A1081 dual carriageway and tunnels, along with three new stations. The light rail platforms at the Parkway station will be built on a new level above the current main line rail platforms. A planning application was submitted in 2016, and the link was approved by Luton Borough Council in June 2017.
Negotiations are underway with the Department for Transport to extend the validity of the Oyster card contactless ticketing system to the airport by 2018. Contactless bank cards (but not Oystercards) became valid for journeys to and from London from October 2019.
The typical off peak service from this station as of 20 May 2018 is as follows:
- 4 trains per hour (tph) to Bedford (operated by Thameslink)
- 2 tph to Luton only (Thameslink)
- 2 tph to Brighton via Harpenden, St Albans, Central London and Gatwick Airport (Thameslink)
- 2 tph to Gatwick Airport via Harpenden, St Albans, Central London and Redhill (Thameslink)
- 2 tph to Rainham via Harpenden, St Albans, Central London, Greenwich, Charlton, Abbey Wood, Dartford, Gravesend and Gillingham (Thameslink)
- 1 tph to Nottingham calling at Bedford, Wellingborough, Kettering, Leicester and Loughborough. (East Midlands Railway)
- 1 tph to London St Pancras International only. (East Midlands Railway)
- During the peaks, Thameslink run services to Orpington, East Grinstead and Littlehampton via central London.
- East Midlands Railway InterCity services to and from Leeds, Nottingham, Sheffield and Derby run through at high speed, but do stop here sometimes.
Railways around Luton
Shuttle service to London Luton Airport
The station is connected to London Luton Airport by a shuttle bus which takes 10 minutes for the journey. Services run every 10 minutes during the day and connect with all trains calling at the station overnight. The service is provided by Thameslink, and through booking to the airport is available from all National Rail stations. Passengers without through tickets must pay an additional fare to use the buses.
- Four platforms
- Four waiting rooms
- Ticket barriers
- FastTicket machine
- Multistorey car park
- Free 20 minute wait car park
- The station participates in the Plusbus scheme where train and bus tickets can be bought together for a cheaper price. It is in the same town as Luton and Leagrave stations.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
|East Midlands Railway|
|Preceding station||Luton Airport Rail Link||Following station|
|Terminus||DART||Luton Airport Terminal|
- "Station usage estimates". Rail statistics. Office of Rail Regulation. Please note: Some methodology may vary year on year.
- Luton on Sunday (20 January 2008). "Airport shuttle bus will charge in future". Archived from the original on 28 January 2013. Retrieved 20 January 2008.
- "GTR (Govia Thameslink Railway)".
- "Thameslink Programme". Network Rail. Retrieved 18 December 2008.
- "London Luton Airport Limited - Mass Passenger Transit System". www.llal.org.uk. Retrieved 31 January 2019.
- "Luton Airport peoplemover plan announced". Railway Gazette. 15 April 2016. Archived from the original on 16 April 2016. Retrieved 16 April 2016.
- Topham, Gwyn (15 April 2016). "Luton airport calls time on bus transfers with £200m fast-track to trains". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 15 April 2016. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
- "Luton Airport could get a new £200m 'Tube-style' link". Evening Standard. Archived from the original on 15 April 2016. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
- "Mass Passenger Transit System". www.llal.org.uk. London Luton Airport Limited. Archived from the original on 31 October 2016. Retrieved 31 August 2017.
- "New railway connection to London Luton Airport approved". BBC News. 22 June 2017. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
- Topham, Gywm (15 April 2016). "Luton airport to replace bus transfers with £200m light rail link". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 June 2017.
- Tap, Tap, Fly, from Luton Airport
- "How often does the shuttle bus run between London Luton Airport and Luton Airport Parkway Rail Station?". London Luton Airport. Retrieved 9 August 2013.
- "Routes & Timetables". Busway. Retrieved 27 June 2017.
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