My Booking
Blue Sky
About Leeds Bradford, Yorkshire's Airport

Transforming LBA

Leeds Bradford Airport (LBA) plans for a replacement terminal have been awarded planning approval by Leeds City Council

The proposal aims to dramatically improve passenger experience, deliver one of the UK’s most environmentally efficient airport buildings, and support the region’s economic prosperity.

Whilst we are waiting for a final Government decision on our transformational replacement terminal building, we are putting in place measures to make sure we can still meet the anticipated growth of up to 7 million passengers per annum. This will see LBA implement a consent secured in January 2019 for an extension to the existing terminal to provide the airport with an alternative option for growth.

Replacement terminal LBA
Replacement terminal

The replacement terminal plans propose the construction of a new, three-floor terminal on an alternative site within the airport’s boundary. Prior to the submission, LBA engaged in an extensive consultative process, with thousands of residents and organisations across Yorkshire providing feedback on the proposed plans.

LBA estimates that as a result of the development, it will support 12,650 permanent jobs across the Leeds City Region, as well as creating 850 construction-related jobs over the period of the build.*


*Figures provided by York Aviation 2020 comprising of the number of full-time equivalent, permanent roles sup-ported by the airport including staff, contractors and impact on the wider region. In addition, it is estimated that 850 full-time equivalent construction person years of employment (a person-year is defined as the amount of work done by an individual during a working year, on a specific job) will be created during build of the development, figures also York Aviation.

Industry comments

Vincent Hodder, CEO of Leeds Bradford Airport, said: We are delighted that our plans for a replacement terminal have been awarded planning approval by Leeds City Council, enabling us to become an outstanding net zero airport, delivering a much-improved passenger experience and creating thousands of jobs, helping to support our region’s recovery. We would like to thank those that have supported our application through the statutory process and we will be consulting with stakeholders over the coming months on the appropriate next steps.

Sandy Needham, Chief Executive of the West and North Yorkshire Chamber, said: Connectivity to markets around the world will remain a major factor in the growth of our regional economy once we are through the current crisis, and so plans to redevelop Leeds Bradford Airport are welcomed by the Chamber. As the economy begins to recover, investment in new infrastructure will provide jobs not only during the construction phase but after works are complete also. As we transition out of the single European market, hopefully with a comprehensive free trade deal, at the end of 2020 it will be more important than ever that Yorkshire businesses can access global markets conveniently. Dealing with the short-term implications of COVID-19 will undoubtedly be at the forefront of the minds of businesses but longer-term market entry strategies will benefit from more efficient international connectivity from our regional airport.

Henri Murison, director of the Northern Powerhouse Partnership, commented: There has long been an understanding that regional airports form a vital part of providing connectivity to access global markets, attracting inward investment, and enabling a sharing of cultures. The plans to improve Leeds Bradford Airport are crucial and form a key part of the wider Northern Powerhouse and national aviation strategy, with environmental sustainability, including closer access to rail links, once built, critical. We must see investment like this to enhance our connectivity in order to drive our ambitions and rebalance the British economy, with Yorkshire as part of the wider North enabled to achieve transformational growth for the benefit of those living here and the next generation.

Public Consultation

Consulting with the public is an incredibly important part of our planning process. We engaged extensively with the public between January and April including two public consultation events, flyers and posters at 27 public information points across Leeds and online feedback forms. 

We thank everyone who participated.

Further Information

Better for passengers

Passengers at Leeds Bradford Airport have suffered a poor experience for too long and it is time to bring it into the 21st century.

LBA’s plans for a replacement terminal submitted to Leeds City Council in May, propose the construction of a modern, three floor, 34,000 sq. mt. building on an alternative site within the airport’s boundary. If approved, the new state-of-the-art terminal building, designed by leading architects Todds, would deliver a passenger experience beyond what is achievable in the existing terminal, which has a legacy of several piecemeal extensions over the course of its 55-year history.

The proposed replacement terminal is designed to exceed our passenger’s expectations – from the moment they step on public transport right through to the moment they board their flight. Below are some examples of the new terminal’s major benefits:

Public transport

  • Public transport access has been prioritised and has the closest proximity to the terminal entrance (including the proposed Parkway rail station)

Check in and security

  • Once through the terminal entrance, there is clear direction to check-in hall if the passenger has hold luggage or to central search if the passenger only has cabin baggage
  • All passenger routes from the forecourt to departure gates are wheelchair accessible
  • With space for 23 check-in desks and 44 bag-drop kiosks, the Check-In Hall has been sized to easily accommodate either traditional check-in or bag drop procedures
  • Security is noted as a stress point along the passenger journey. To counter this, the proposed layout for security offers: ample queuing space, natural daylight, five regular security lanes and modern equipment to reduce queuing
  • Security is also the upper floor, so offers waiting passengers natural light and views of the surrounding countryside


  • Welfare facilities, including changing places, are frequent and equally spaced throughout the terminal


  • The departures lounge is amply sized. It includes an appropriate number of seats and multiple shops, bars and eateries, as well as premium lounges
  • Within the departures lounge, the glass walls allow for natural light and panoramic views of the aircraft and runway. Additional natural light will be available from roof lights.


  • There are four departure gates within the departures lounge itself and two of these are directly connected to aircraft via airbridges
  • There are 12 other contact departure gates and a further two bussing gates (for the remote stands) along the proposed pier. All gates have been sized to suit the capacity of the relative aircraft
  • The passenger route to the gates along the pier and each gate has direct views to the runway and aircraft stands

Arrivals and baggage

  • The immigration hall will accommodate ten Gates and six desks with ample queuing space and natural daylight
  • International baggage reclaim will have three large baggage belts within a double-height space. These are positioned off a concourse route to avoid congestion and to ensure a clear route for passengers without hold luggage
  • Domestic baggage reclaim is separate and will have one large baggage belt
  • The arrivals hall is separate from any other processes to avoid congestion and to ensure a clear route for passengers. Commercial units and welfare facilities will complement this space

More sustainable

This will be a state-of-the-art building with a smaller physical footprint, becoming one of the most environmentally efficient terminals in the UK, that will be rated ‘Excellent’ under the internationally recognised Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (BREEAM), a standard only a handful of other airport terminal buildings across the world have achieved.

The building will maximise energy efficiency in both heating and lighting and incorporate a wide range of best-practice sustainability initiatives, reducing the embodied carbon in new building materials, electric vehicle charging points and sustainable drainage measures.

While we won’t be growing any larger, we will be growing smarter and more sustainably, achieving a target of net zero emissions from our operations on the ground by 2023.

Better for business

As Leeds Council have stated, if the North was a separate country it would be the world’s 21st largest economy – and Leeds Bradford Airport is central to that success.

The airport has an important role to play in supporting economic growth through improved connectivity. Increased productivity comes from the role the airport plays in connecting businesses and people with investors, clients and customers across Europe.

In 2018, LBA’s economic impact was estimated at £475m, supporting almost 7200 jobs. The North of England is a potential powerhouse for industry, manufacturing and technology, all of which needs aviation to thrive and work towards a sustainable future.

Yorkshire is at the forefront of a dynamic and growing UK and is the undisputed leader within the Northern Powerhouse - with a local economy worth £69 billion, a workforce of 1.4 million people and over 7 million within an hour's drive - it is the largest contributor to UK GDP in the Northern Powerhouse.

Businesses such as Channel 4, First Direct, Arla Foods, Asda, Morrisons, Capita and Sky are headquartered in the region. It remains one of the leading locations in the UK for foreign and direct investment, according to EY's (Ernst & Young) annual Attractiveness Survey.

The Barclays SME Growth Factors Index 2017 named Bradford is the best city in the UK to start a business, while Rightmove has named Leeds as the best English city to set up a business in a co-working space, and the city has the highest concentration of scale-ups outside of London.

At 845,000 sq ft, the Leeds office sector has the largest volume of office floorspace under construction in the history of the Leeds Crane Survey, published by Deloitte. HMRC are taking up the largest office space requirement the city has ever seen by relocating 6,000 civil servants in a 380,000 sq ft building in the city centre.

What will this mean for you?

  • For local residents and passengers, it will mean a more comfortable and more efficient local airport.
  • The upgrade will not result in any significant change to the numbers of passengers through the airport beyond those already in the public domain.
  • Public transport will be significantly improved to the airport with the signing of a new agreement with a bus provider to enable a better service into both Leeds and Bradford followed by a complete transition to cleaner vehicles.
  • Millions of passengers leave Yorkshire each year to drive along the M62 corridor or south to catch flights from Manchester and London, adding to traffic on some of the UK’s most congested roads. Getting our offer right with improved service, choice and connectivity will help us to reduce this figure as more people start their journey from LBA.

Keeping our carbon commitments

  • Design - The upgrade will create one of the most environmentally efficient terminals in the UK, with cutting-edge building design and construction, and the latest environmentally efficient technologies and a transition to electric vehicles.
  • Passenger Numbers – The new building will provide for the same number of passengers, but in a better way, keeping passenger numbers at the same level as announced publicly in 2017, and which formed the basis for the plan for the extended terminal, which was approved by Leeds City Council two years ago. 
  • Interior - The airport will be equipped with multiple sustainable upgrades, from more efficient light, heat and energy, reducing the embodied carbon in new building materials, and adding better noise reduction.
  • Net Zero - At LBA, we take our environmental responsibilities seriously. We are committing to our ground emissions from operations being net zero from 2023. We will achieve this target by building on our strong track record - over the past 5 years we have reduced emissions from energy use by 45% while passenger numbers have increased.
  • No 1 - Just like other sectors in the UK, we will bridge any gap in our emissions to our net zero target through investing in projects that remove carbon. Our ambition is to make those investments locally where possible. Our current carbon commitments will place us at the highest level of the Airports Council International’s recognised Airport Carbon Accreditation Standard (ACAS), from the moment we open.
  • Incentivising Airlines - Our commitment doesn’t stop at our own emissions. The airline industry is already innovating. We will be working with airlines to improve efficiency, to reduce delays and wasted fuel as well as bringing in incentives for the use of newer more fuel-efficient aircraft and in future hybrid aircraft.

This upgrade will provide a sustainable terminal fit for the future, to enable us to meet our planned capacity responsibly, and for carbon emissions from our operations to reach net zero significantly faster than current Local and Central Government targets. 


Leeds Bradford Airport’s (LBA) 'Route to 2030' Strategic Development Plan (SDP) final Masterplan document informs stakeholders and the local community of the airport’s likely growth and development to 2030. This document was published in March 2017, replacing LBA’s 2005 Masterplan. 

Alongside the SDP sits the Surface Access Strategy (SAS) which has also been updated to set out short, medium and long term plans for improving surface transport to the region. Both documents can be downloaded below: 



The public consultation period ran from 3 March 2016 to 30 April 2016 and the airport arranged a series of locations for the documents to be viewed during that time.