Luton Borough Council has approved plans for an expansion at Luton Airport which would take capacity from 12 million passengers up to 18 million.
The approval is subject to ministerial call in, so may yet be reversed.
It would not mean a new runway, but produce a new parallel taxiway to unlock capacity from the existing runway for an additional 6 million passengers a year.
The three phase plan would also expand, modernise and remodel the existing terminal building; increase the capacity of the main road access; and provide a new multi-storey car park.
While Luton Airport is in effect owned by the local authority, the decision has been taken on economic grounds, with the council believing that expanded passenger numbers mean more jobs, and that this would outweigh any noise, pollution, or surface transport impact.