UK: The 1·2 km rubber-tyred automated peoplemover which links the north and south terminals at London Gatwick airport in less than 3 min reopened on July 1, following a £43m modernisation by Bombardier Transportation, Costain Group and Vinci Construction.

The twin-track elevated line opened in 1987, and airport owner Global Infrastructure Partners estimates the original vehicles subsequently ran the equivalent of five return trips to the Moon, getting through 600 tyres and 16 000 power pick-up shoes.

Bombardier was awarded a €32m contract to modernise the APM’s electrical and mechanical systems in December 2007. Work began in April 2008 with services suspended from September 2009. The guideways have been retained, but all other systems replaced, including control, communication and power distribution equipment and platform screen doors.

The original vehicles have been replaced with two trains each comprising three Bombardier Innovia APM 100 cars built in Pittsburgh, offering more seats and CCTV.

Bombardier Transportation says its Systems Division has now supplied transit systems for 32 airports worldwide.