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Joyce says Sydney needs 2nd airport…in Sydney

written by australianaviation.com.au | April 23, 2012

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce says peak hour congestion at Sydney Airport is already causing delays. (Seth Jaworski)

Qantas CEO Alan Joyce has called on the federal government to move ahead with plans for a second Sydney airport despite opposition from NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell.

In an opinion piece for the Daily Telegraph, Joyce said overcrowding at Sydney’s Kingsford Smith had “got to the stage now it just can’t go much longer” and called on the government to cement plans for a second airport

“Passengers leaving Melbourne or Canberra on time can be stuck for 30 minutes above Sydney because of congestion, missing meetings or getting home late to the family,” Joyce said.

The Qantas boss threw his support behind a recent government study that recommended Badgerys Creek or Wilton as the best sites for a new airport. Both major political parties have ruled out Badgerys Creek  due to heavy residential development, but support appears to be coalescing around Wilton despite strong local opposition.

O’Farrell, however, has vowed to oppose a second airport anywhere in the Sydney basin and has instead proposed expanding Canberra Airport and linking it to Sydney via high-speed rail. But Joyce said Canberra was too far away to serve as a viable option.


“I don’t think [O’Farrell’s] position makes sense,” Joyce said. “I don’t think Canberra works as an alternative, it’s too far away.”

Joyce’s comments are his strongest yet on the subject and are likely to increase pressure on O’Farrell, whose position is also at odds with that of the federal opposition.

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Comments (7)

  • Keef


    Why not use Richmond? It is already there has rail access!

  • Andrew McLaughlin


    Richmond seems OK on face value, but it has a short runway; the RAAF is the main tenant; there would be noise issues around Windsor and Richmond; there is no terminal; and the road, rail, fuel and other infrastructure would need to be significantly bolstered.

    If a crossing north-south runway were to be added, it would need to be signifcantly aligned towards the south due to the flood plain to the north, which would have noise implications for Londonderry, St Marys, Marsden Park, Llandilo and other suburbs to the south.

    If Richmond were to be considered, I suspect it would only be suitable for some peak overflow, regional flights, GA and maybe small-medium freighters.

  • Alan Robinson


    Good idea Mr Joyce to build a second Sydney Airport close to the city.
    We already have to endure aircraft noise from Mascot and Bankstown 24 hours a day.
    (Bankstown has take off and landing 24 hours and various aircraft still do take off and land outside the curfew at Mascot).
    Not to mention the occasional police helicopter that uses the M5 as a road map. Oh, nearly forgot about about the military aircraft on exercises.
    Badgery’s Creek will also put us in the flightpath of one runway.
    I suggest we build it near your place in the Rocks. That should solve some of my noise problem..

  • Michael Anderson


    think Richmond has a 2134m runway & is 45m wide, so it could take anything up to A330 or B767 size, but initially it might just do freight & some passenger services using 737/320’s.

    Over time road 7 rail links could be improved.

    Neither federal or state govt has any money to build a new airport.

    Richmond exists & Gillard could tell ADF it’s becoming commercial tomorrow.

  • Ross


    This is an absolute no brainer.
    Richmond is by far and away the easiest and cheapest solution.
    Throw in a 2nd north south runway, and build both a pasenger terminal and the transport connections (with existing transport all nearby). The startup time to convert Richmond to passenger operations is very short compared to constructing a brand new airport.
    The latest generation passenger aircraft are far quieter than the C130’s that use Richmond now, so the locals should realistically be happier (not angry) to see a change of operations there.
    To build a brand new airport at Wilton or Badgery’s Creek is politically more palatible but is extremely costly, and a complete waste of taxpayers money.
    Why are governments so extremely soft on this issue?

  • Peter Ralph


    Alan Joyce wants a second airport as far from Sydney as possible – Wilton / Canberra whatever, so all the other airlines will have to use the new one, while he insists Qantas has too much invested at Kingsford Smith to move. So Kingsford Smith exclusively for Qantas / Jetstar, and all the others an extra 1-3 hours from downtown Sydney. Imagine the commercial advantage in selling a Qantas flight London to your Sydney hotel in 25 hours, and all his competitors have customers adding the extra time to their trips. Who wants a long train ride after 24 hours in the air ?

  • Len K


    When I was based there the place was fogged in a lot of the time in winter.
    Does anyone realise how many times it is cut off by floods?
    Not practical for commercial operations.

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