Gatwick will consolidate operations into the south terminal from April 1st.
The airport will also limit scheduled flights on its runway to between 14:00-22:00.
The decision comes in response to the severe and unparalleled impact of Covid-19 on the global aviation sector, officials said.
The runway will remain open for emergency landings and diversions only outside these hours, Gatwick added.
The temporary closure of the north terminal will last a minimum of one month and the situation will be kept under regular review.
A decision taken on reopening the north terminal when airline traffic increases and government public health advice – including on social distancing – is relaxed.
Manchester Airport announced a similar move earlier this month.
The decision to scale back operations at Gatwick has been discussed with the airport’s airline partners and any passengers booked on flights due to depart or arrive at the airport during this period are advised to contact their airline.
Stewart Wingate, chief executive, Gatwick Airport, said: “Gatwick is a resilient but also responsible business and during these extraordinary times we need to take unprecedented measures to protect the health and wellbeing of our staff and passengers, while also shielding the business from the impact of coronavirus.
“I would also like to take this opportunity to thank my staff for their continuing hard work through this difficult time and to reassure them that we are taking these difficult decisions now, so that we are in a position to recover quickly and get back to generating jobs and economic benefits for the region and wider economy well into the future.”
He added: “During these extraordinary times, we have also seen remarkable acts of kindness and community spirit in support of people who may need some additional help.
“To add to this, we will also be providing some opportunities so that any of our staff, who have time during this period of reduced operations, that choose to, can help support people in our local communities.”
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