Closure of the Qantas heavy maintenance base at Avalon Victoria would appear to have moved one step closer with the announcement on October 18 the airline will invest a further $30 million in its Brisbane maintenance base.
The work will see the current line maintenance facilities expanded into three lines and will include new aircraft docking systems, safety equipment and infrastructure.
Qantas CEO Alan Joyce said; “We’ve already started on a process to consolidate our heavy maintenance facilities from three sites, to now two sites, to ultimately one in Australia. We have no set timeframe but it’s something that needs to happen.”
Signalling the likely demise of the airline’s Avalon facility, which was established in May 1998 amid great fanfare as the future of 747 heavy maintenance, Joyce said Brisbane was “the obvious candidate to become our one heavy maintenance site, given the purpose built hangars and modern equipment”.
Alongside the further development of heavy maintenance in Brisbane, Qantas will recruit 30 maintenance and engineering apprentices. “These apprentices will be employed in Brisbane, the major growth area of our business,” Joyce affirmed.
The announcement comes after the decision by Qantas to invest $70 million to upgrade catering facilities in Brisbane.