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Sydney Airport flags major overhaul

written by australianaviation.com.au | December 5, 2011


Sydney Airport has proposed a major overhaul that would organise its terminals by airline rather than destination.

The plan, as detailed in the video above, would see the current domestic terminals – T2 and T3 – allocated to Qantas, its subsidiary Jetstar and its international partners. The international terminal – T1 – would go to Virgin Australia, its partners, and other international carriers.

Airport officials say the proposed set up would help cut connection times and streamline operations.

Qantas and Virgin both welcomed the plan, which will be considered alongside the airport’s 2014 master-plan process and could be in place by 2019.


“The proposed new terminal precinct would have significant benefits for all passengers travelling with both Qantas and Jetstar,” Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said. “As passenger numbers grow over the next decade, it is vital that airlines and airports work closely together to deliver a seamless travel experience.”

A view of the proposed integrated Virgin Australia terminal. (SACL)

Virgin Australia CEO John Borghetti said the proposal had “potential,” while Jetstar CEO Bruce Buchanan said the proposal was a step forward.

“The potential to have our domestic and international services under one roof would make it much easier for people transiting to connecting flights, which strengthens Sydney’s role as a major gateway and creates better scheduling options,” Buchanan said.

The airport said it remained committed to supporting other domestic and regional carriers such as Tiger, Regional Express, AeroPelican and Brindabella but had not determined which terminal precinct they would join.

In addition to the reorganisation, the plan would also see the construction of a new Qantas Engineering complex for aircraft line maintenance, and a new Virgin Australia hangar for wide and narrow body aircraft that will serve as a dedicated maintenance base.

In a statement, the airport said it would begin broader consultations with stakeholders such as airlines, airport related businesses, border control agencies, regulators and the public before proceeding.

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Comments (5)

  • Aaron


    Looking at the office we are impressed and even though it is a presentation (artistic licence allowed) we note a few things.

    # Access to the VA terminal aprons from aircraft using the runway 34R/16L will have to cross 34L/16R. would cost at least 2 slots of the runway capacity. or exclusive use of 34L/16R for VA & affilates.
    # limited code c domestic parking for VA shown, plenty for Qantas
    # is it a new control tower or error? current tower north of General Homes drive
    # great apron capacity for Qantas, looks to have split international operations (qantas jet base and toll freight).
    # Whilst statement references other carriers their home not yet commited (VA or QT) the video shows QT side and capacity at VA limited. Would love to see more detailed plans.

  • random


    There might be a huge saving for some at the end of the rainbow, but the capital works involved must still be worth a mozza. I presume it will require T2 and T3 being rebuilt as two level buildings, with significant retrofit to many areas to accomodate arrival and departure and provide cutoms / immigration separation.

    The most important questions still remain –
    * will travellers get free (or a conceded more $ reasonable) access to luggage trolleys (cause the cost is a disgrace),
    * will the price of parking drop (cause the cost is a disgrace),
    * will the price and quality of public transport improve (cause the cost is a disgrace),
    * can they redesign T2/3 so that vehicle traffic improves (without going silly and trying to ban cars, or force them into pergetory (as is currently the case), AND
    * will the government be roped in to spend money on this because it is “necessary infrastructure” (despite the fact that they divested their ownership many years ago to avoid this exact situation).

  • Hugo


    Why cant Sydney Airport just rebuild a one terminal for domestic & International under one roof like melbourne, I mean why cant we have a world class Airport, instead of the hodge podge retrofits they keep doing. We are spose to be the premier gateway for the country.

    We deserve a airport in the league of Changi (Singapore) or Suvarnabhumi (Bangkok) , sure it will cost now but in the long run it will be big enough to accomodate growth. Also if space is issue why cant we do what Japan / Hong kong / Macau has done and built Airports or runways on reclaimed land in the harbour / seas.

    Anyway Im sure many will disagree and say but it costs money, personally I wish they would just flatten Sydney Airport and start again, maybe then we will get a decent airport a world class one like the two I mentioned earlier.

  • whatthe


    wont happen !
    why – no government , federal , state will work together to get a facility up to a 21st century one without demanding a arm & a leg of the travelling public to use it.
    a dedictated underground railway between T1 & the current T2/3 , & then a dedicated rail link to the city
    is required (& promised ) & don’t mention the road links required – it will never happen , we a stuck with
    the mess we currently have.

  • Latrell


    Prior to this year I was quite the frequent lrevalter. I’ve flown Jetstar, Virgin and Qantas. I only fly Qantas when it’s the only option (sadly some rural flights are only catered by Qantas). I will never ever ever ever ever fly Jetstar for as long as I live. Every time I flew with them it wasn’t a good experience. I am one of those notorous excess baggage people. That has a big impact on who my choice of airline is.. Get this.. one time.. whilst the airfare was free’ (someone else had bought the ticket and bought on price alone) .. I had to pay nearly the same due to excess baggage. I did the math. Excess baggage on Virgin is ALWAYS cheaper than Jetstar. Always.Whilst I’m not a frequent plane flight lrevalter and may not have excess baggage anymore.. I will still rather pay that little bit more for a Virgin flight vs Jetstar. I won’t ever touch Tiger unless I want to be stranded at an airport for hours upon hours.

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