A new skills and business hub will be at the heart of Luton Airport owner’s new identity as the group changes its name to Luton Rising.
The company was formerly called London Luton Airport Limited and was often confused with the operators of the airport, London Luton Airport Operations.
Luton Borough Council will continue to own Luton Rising, but the company’s focus on the local community will become more important.
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The group has acquired a former Vauxhall building on Kimpton Road – opposite its current base in Hart House – which is being renovated into a business hub due to open in summer 2022.
The new hub will bring 200 new jobs to the town and will be named after Luton Town Football Club legend, Bob Morton.
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Formerly known as ‘K Block’, the building has been renamed in collaboration with Luton Town Football Club as ‘Morton House’ in memory of club legend Morton who played for the Hatters from 1946 to 1964.
Gary Sweet, chief executive officer of Luton Town FC and 2020 Developments said: “We are absolutely thrilled to be associated with this new development.
“Bob Morton made a record 550 appearances for our club as centre-forward and wing-half, scoring 48 goals. It is fantastic that this investment in skills and business development in Luton will be linked with his memory.”
The new building will aim to have sustainability at its heart with solar panels, electric car charging points and rainwater harvesting.
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A training and skills hub led by Luton Council will be based on the lower ground floor, focused on learning in practical and social skills through its Passport to Employment programme.
The development of Morton House will see some businesses currently located in Hart House Business Centre take up the first allocation of space on the ground or first floor and become the building’s anchor tenants.
The second-floor accommodation will be targeted at start-up companies particularly within the aviation, automotive, artificial intelligence (AI) and data-driven sectors.
Cllr Javeria Hussain, chair of Luton Rising, said: “This is another exciting example of Luton Rising working hard for the future prosperity of Luton.
“We are very proud of the incredibly strong track record of investment that makes us the UK’s number one community airport owner, and redevelopment of Morton House will enable us to deliver a much-needed business and skills hub for the town and make a significant contribution to increasing the employability of local residents that is such an important part of the town’s 2040 vision.”
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