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Amphibious aircraft manufacturer to set up on NSW Central Coast

written by australianaviation.com.au | September 27, 2016

Central Coast Council chief executive Rob Noble and AAI president Khoa Hoang at the official signing. (Central Coast Council)
Central Coast Council chief executive Rob Noble and AAI president Khoa Hoang at the official signing. (Central Coast Council)

An amphibious aircraft maker plans to build a new $100 million manufacturing facility on the NSW Central Coast.

In a boost to Australia’s aerospace sector, Amphibian Aerospace Industries (AAI) has signed a 40-year lease on space at Central Coast Airport at Warnervale. The site will be used for work on its Albatross amphibious aircraft that was previously done in the United States.

NSW Premier Mike Baird made the announcement alongside AAI group president Khoa Hoang on the Central Coast on Tuesday.

“This is a great day for the Central Coast – this announcement means thousands of jobs for the region with a significant flow on to the Central Coast economy,” Premier Baird said in a statement.

“The decision by AAI to locate here is a testament that NSW is Australia’s prime location for business growth and investment.”


Hoang said the facility at Central Coast Airport would focus on upgrades to the Albatross, including new turboprop engines, new avionics in the cockpit and passenger amenities.

“We could do this from numerous countries in the world but chose Australia because there is great available aviation engineering talent, we have support from the government and it is a stable political and legal environment,” Hoang said.

“It just made good sense to us to choose the Central Coast. It’s close to Sydney and Newcastle, it’s in a great location and it offers our employees a great lifestyle.”

The development of the site would take between three to five years, with AAI required to submit a development proposal to the Central Coast Council.

The local council said the lease with AAI was part of efforts to make Central Coast Airport a “hub for light to medium commercial general aviation”.

Currently, the airport at Warnervale, which has a 1.2km paved runway, handles general aviation aircraft.

“Having an anchor tenant like AAI at Central Coast Airport will help put our region on the aviation industry map,” Central Coast Council administrator Ian Reynolds said.

“It will stimulate the Central Coast to become nationally recognised and help in attracting additional investment from related industries and innovators and growing our economy.”

Figures from Central Coast Council indicated the facility would create 240 direct jobs in aircraft manufacturing, as well as “thousands” of indirect jobs in other industries such as the manufacturing of parts and instruments, as well as fitouts and avionics.

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Comments (2)

  • That Ron guy


    I live 5 minutes from Warnervale aerodrome. It really is just a little aerodrome, with a few light aircraft doing training circuits on weekends mostly. If you drive past there at night, it’s just a big, black, dark empty space. I think the name “Central Coast Airport” was just some clever spin made up for the above event. But it’s good nonetheless to see that the airfield will live on & is not being sold off to developers in an area rapidly being consumed by new-build housing. Whether there’s actual a market for re-built Grumman Albatross aircraft, who knows?

  • Alan


    I have lived on the Central Coast all of my life, for nearly half a century. I just read some feedback by another Coastie in the local paper and, as I, he too appreciates the appeal, insight and potential advancement of the future to this region that this facility will bring.

    From what I’ve seen over the last number of years, the aviation industry in NSW has been threatened in many ways, hampering advancements and progress with everything from related small business to entire airfields, either from money grabs or land development, from politicians and property developers.

    For quite some time now, there’s been a threat hanging over the head of the airfeild at Warnervale too, particularly from money hungry property developers.

    The development of this facility will be a hugely welcome injection into this industry to hopefully spark renewed interest in this sector. And particularly to secure Warnervale as an aviation centre. From an aviation industry standpoint, we certainly need what AAI is bringing to the Coast, it is a much needed initiative.

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