May 19, 2016

Runway expansion project closer to take-off

Runway expansion project closer to take-off

A planned $347 million Sunshine Coast Airport runway expansion has received State environmental approval.

State Development Minister Anthony Lynham said the project would open up the region to more national and international destinations such as Singapore and Perth and had the potential to bring almost half a million more visitors a year to the coast by 2040.

“Most importantly, this will generate 1500 more ongoing jobs by 2040, more than 80 construction jobs and an estimated $140 million-plus boost to regional economic activity during construction,” he said.

“That represents business opportunities for local construction, manufacturing and professional services companies in the region.”

The expansion includes:

  • a new 2450m by 45m east-west runway, capable of servicing aircraft such as the Airbus A330, Boeing 787 and Boeing 777
  • proposed changes to airspace and flight paths
  • two end taxiway loops, navigational aids and expansion of the existing apron
  • an air traffic control tower and aircraft rescue and fire-fighting services station.

Dr Lynham said that with the new runway aircraft movements were forecast to grow by 20 per cent to 38,270 by 2020 and a further 30 per cent to 53,480 by 2040, making Sunshine Coast Airport a similar size to Mackay and Newcastle airports.

Sunshine Coast Council aviation portfolio Councillor Steve Robinson said the $347 million Sunshine Coast Airport Expansion Project would help grow passenger numbers and support the needs of the growing Sunshine Coast community.

“It is anticipated it will contribute $4.1 billion to the local economy and result in 3500 fewer dwellings being affected by noise each day,” Cr Robinson said.

The State approval includes 88 conditions and 29 recommendations, drawn up after the Coordinator-General considered 2227 submissions as well as the environmental impact statement (EIS) and additional EIS information.

The next stage for the project is Federal Government approvals from the Department of Environment, Airservices Australia and the Civil Aviation Safety Authority.

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