We are advised that:
The airport is now up to 14 million passengers per annum, growth fuelled by the comparatively strong economy, business from Eastern Europe and attractive deals. Construction work to cope with increased numbers (up to 18mppa) is in its comparatively early stages. A revised flightpath was introduced in 2015 for some departures in westerly winds and does not affect Bucks. A combination of reducing the planes’ speeds and advances in new technology means changes could be made so that now the vast majority of the flights fly within 500m of the official centre line, which would be good news for many communities.
LADACAN – a community action group – explained that as well as significantly more flights, the fleet mix has altered and there are fewer quieter planes now at Luton. The planes are carrying more passengers and perhaps freight, so they are heavier and therefore noisier. Luton’s planes arrive and depart in bunches, and such bunches are lasting longer, and the planes are flying closer together. Remember that if you are disturbed by aircraft noise, you should report it to the airport via the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
What would help most communities (apart from those who really are at the ends of the runway) would be if the planes could fly higher for longer. However, interaction with other flightpaths for other airports and holding positions (stacks) make this impossible most of the time. Eventually they want to move the stacks further out and higher up, which would make a huge difference. Heathrow is trialling a later deployment of the undercarriage and we understand that Luton are going to meet with Heathrow with a view to reducing their own deployment. Some plane engines are being retro-fitted to reduce a whining/whistling noise.
Luton Borough Council are currently consulting on a Mass Passenger Transit System to move passengers to and from Luton Airport Parkway railway station and the airport terminal. It is anticipated that they will submit a planning application in 2017. The airport has asked Arriva to review its bus service from Aylesbury to the airport (which currently requires several changes of bus service).