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Sydney Airport to talk with builders about Badgerys Creek

written by australianaviation.com.au | May 14, 2015

Looking west over Badgerys Creek. (Seth Jaworski)

Sydney Airport plans to talk with construction firms about what building a new airport at Badgerys Creek will involve once the formal consultation period with the government concludes, chief executive Kerrie Mather says.

However, no decision on whether the company will take up its right of first refusal to build and operate the new airport will be made until 2016 at the earliest.

The nine-month consultation between Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development and the owners of Sydney Airport is due to end on June 30.

Once that concludes, the government will develop a proposal for the airport outlining the technical specifications, contractual terms and the timetable.

Mather says Sydney Airport expects to have ongoing informal consultations with the government after June 30, as its team of internal and external continued to evaluate the opportunity that a Western Sydney Airport (WSA) at Badgerys Creek represented.

“In addition to continuing engagement with the Commonwealth, Sydney Airport will engage with the construction market in the third quarter of this year to assist us to gather information as to the efficient and optimum design to determine the cost and viability of the WSA project,” Mather told security holders at Sydney Airport’s annual general meeting on Thursday.


“We are working actively to understand all stakeholder impacts and expectations. In particular we are considering our investor base and its priorities which we are very familiar with.”

Mather said its experts were analysing issues such as “maximising aviation capacity in the Sydney Basin, risk and cost minimisation, value engineering, optimum design and staging, efficient pricing structures, and precedents for government assisted private sector provision of infrastructure”.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development Warren Truss told the Preparing for Take-Off conference in Sydney on May 1 the government’s formal proposal, called a notice of intention, would take some months.


“It is possible that we would have a formal proposal to present to Sydney Airport as soon as the end of this year,” Truss told the conference in prepared remarks.

“If Sydney Airport refuses this proposal, then we will take it to the open market and offer the opportunity to build and operate the new airport to other parties.”

Mather said Sydney Airport would be required to make a decision on the government’s proposal “either four or nine months later, so some time in 2016”.

The government has said previously construction at Badgerys Creek was earmarked to start in 2016 and be operational by mid-2020. The airport would initially have a single 4km runway and operate without a curfew.

Truss said some early engineering work has already commenced on the 1,700ha site, including a second phase of geotechnical analysis that involves digging 100 boreholes up to a depth of 40m.

Meanwhile, Mather said the airport was working on a new international pricing agreement with various airlines that expire in June with the Board of Airline Representatives of Australia (BARA), Qantas and Virgin Australia.

“We see the renegotiation as a unique opportunity to deepen our engagement with our airline partners and BARA on all aspects of their requirements for facilities, products, capacity and quality of service at Sydney Airport,” Mather said.

BARA negotiates collectively on behalf of a number of international airlines that fly to Australia.

The AGM is Max Moore-Wilton’s last as Sydney Airport chairman. Long-time director Trevor Gerber has been nominated as the company’s new chairman.

Comments (5)

  • Red Barron


    Talk to the Wagner guys from Toowoomba. They seem to know how to get things done.

  • Dane


    Isn’t it a conflict of interest to have one company managing both of Sydney’s airports? Sydney Airport could raise prices at one location and lower them at the other and price airlines and companies out of one location. Instead of creating a competitive market, you have a monopoly where Sydney Airport can stifle growth and charge what they want..

    Also, has a draft airspace plan been released to see how other airfields and airspace within the Sydney basin will be affected?

  • random



    The only difference here is that Wagners had no snouts in the trough, no plethora of consultancies to have to placate. Unfortunately it would seem that the development at Badgery’s Ck will struggle to avoid that. As Sir Humphrey once said in Yes Minister, “this money is for making EVERYONE better”. When process is given the same oxygen as results, then waste and wanton disregard for value go missing unfortunately.

    Time to stop the endless consulting and planning…..

  • mike9


    I see that I’m not the only one who regards this as a shambles waiting to happen , we will here of the cost over runs , unforseen delays , the usual government run project . years in the planning and still nothing will happen .

  • Dee


    Struth! There was much talk about a second Sydney airport and Badgery’s Creek airport 30 years ago. Now we are into more talks. Then there has to be consultation, then plans drawn up, then objections heard, then a closing date, then tenders asked for, then monies obtained and allocated, then dirt dug, then real construction take place. Along the way there will be a few union strikes for more money and finally ……. about the year 2030 it be opened.

    I went to China last year and by comparison if they were to build Badgerey’s Creek Airport allow three years max and it would be expecting arrivals as the terminal fit out was completed.

    I expect to be finished with travel & flying when Badgery’s opens.


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