Federal government approves Gold Coast Airport 2017 Master Plan

An aerial image of Gold Coast Airport. (Gold Coast Airport)
An aerial image of Gold Coast Airport. (Gold Coast Airport)

Gold Coast Airport says the federal government has approved its 2017 Master Plan, which details improvements to the facility over the next 20 years to cater for the projected increase in passenger numbers.

The airport’s chief operating officer Marion Charlton said the Master Plan was focused on growth in new aviation infrastructure and commercial facilities over the next five years, such as the continued expansion of the terminal and additional aircraft parking stands, in addition to public transport links.

“Master planning for the airport has also taken into account the future introduction of heavy and light rail facilities,” Charlton said in a statement on Thursday.

“Whilst this is a medium to long term prospect, planning has occurred to ensure that future stations are highly accessible within the terminal precinct.”

Gold Coast Airport said the number of domestic and international passengers at the facility was expected to more than double from 6.7 million annually currently to 16.6 million by 2037.

The airport said the final approved Master Plan would be available for viewing on its website by September.

Projects currently underway at Gold Coast Airport include the installation of an Instrument Landing System (ILS) for aircraft landing from the north on Runway 14, which the airport has said previously was the direction about two-thirds of all flights land.

The ILS, which assists pilots on equipped aircraft with a precise radio navigation aid, would reduce the number of missed approaches, diversions and delays due to weather.

Gold Coast was the only airport among Australia’s top 12 busiest airports that currently did not have an ILS. The airport had the satellite based landing system Required Navigation Performance (RNP), as well as High Intensity Runway Edge Lighting (HIRL), installed in 2012.

The airport is also upgrading the southern end of the airfield, with three new Code E aircraft parking stands (for the likes of Boeing 777s, 787s and Airbus A330s and A350s) and two aerobridges, to be built.

The work was expected to be completed in time for what is likely to be a busy year in 2018, when Gold Coast hosts the Commonwealth Games. The event is expected to bring more than 117,000 visitors, 5,000 athletes, 2,000 officials and 2,700 media representative to the city.

Expansion of the apron and taxiway is also on the cards and due to be completed by 2021.

Gold Coast Airport is one of four airports owned by Queensland Airports Ltd alongside Townsville, Mount Isa and Longreach.

Comments

  1. Teddy says

    Shame about its QAL stable-mates, particularly Townsville – which has struggled through haphazard plans for terminal expansion. No doubt its struggles to secure any meaningful pax growth in the past decade, despite optimistic projections, is no doubt in some way related to QAL’s indifference to investing in Townsville without levies to partly fund it. The airport has stagnated at around 1.6-1.7 million pax pa.

    The obvious effects of this stand-off include, but are not limited to the protracted failure to deliver a Virgin lounge – now rather embarrassing given that airports like Alice Springs and Mackay have managed their affairs sufficiently well to enable VA lounges. Thinking about it more carefully, one can understand why QF has been so adamant about blocking levies – it’s a game of self-protection – the levies will enable a VA lounge amongst other things.

    Given that situation, the only way to break the deadlock is for QAL to fund the terminal expansion without levies – as they are the only party that ‘could’ be described as having the interests of Townville as a core focus. QAL obviously doesn’t subscribe to the ‘Field of Dreams’ approach however – build it and they will come – unless it relates to Gold Coast.