The $100 million redevelopment of Hobart Airport, set to transform the state’s busiest gateway, has been hailed as a win for the state’s economy.
The project includes a $40 million runway extension, enabled through funding assistance of $38 million from the Australian Government, and an additional $2 million from Hobart International Airport Pty Ltd.
There will also be an extensive $25 million redevelopment of the airport’s passenger terminal, which will include a larger departure lounge, centralised areas for arrivals, international passenger processing areas, and a range of exciting new retail and dining spaces.
This is in addition to $40 million that has been invested in key infrastructure projects over the past 3 years, representing an overall investment in excess of $100 million over seven years.
Tasmanian Chamber of Commerce and Industry CEO Michael Bailey said the terminal upgrade of Hobart Airport would have significant flow-on effects.
“We believe that the redevelopment will boost the appeal of Hobart as a destination and certainly with different retail operations going into the precinct it will certainly add to the economic drive that the airport gives to Hobart,” Mr Bailey said.
The first project for the terminal redevelopment is the transformation of the Arrivals Hall, featuring designs inspired by Tasmania’s environment, an indoor/outdoor dining experience, the relocation of car rental desks and an external forecourt area, all due for completion in mid-2016.
Premier Will Hodgman said this investment could not come at a better time for the tourism industry, the Antarctic sector and Tasmania’s fresh produce exporters.
“With this significant investment in our gateway airport, we have an ideal opportunity to establish improved and sustainable connections to key growth markets for Tasmanian exporters and tourism operators,” Mr Hodgman said.
The terminal redevelopment will showcase some of Tasmania’s best food and tourism experiences. New dining options will feature Tasmanian produce and producers.
There are also changes planned for the road in front of the terminal and the relocation of car rental parking, also due for completion in mid-2016.
The redevelopment is being undertaken in partnership with Qantas, Virgin Australia, Jetstar and Tiger Airways; car rental partners Hertz, Budget, Avis, Thrifty, Europcar and Redspot; food and beverage partner SSP and retail partner Australian Way.
Hobart Airport CEO Rod Parry said that Hobart Airport is a major contributor to the Tasmanian economy and that the redevelopment will create new opportunities for Tasmania.
“Hobart Airport contributes 731 jobs and $143 million into the state’s economy, and is a major partner for numerous businesses,” Mr Parry said.
“The extended runway will create new opportunities for Tasmania, by enabling new destinations to be reached non-stop. It will also provide an important piece of infrastructure for Hobart to become a more competitive Antarctic Gateway, an industry which provided $189 million into the Tasmanian economy in 2012/13.”
Mr Parry said that building the longer runway would require a section of Surf Road, which runs parallel to Seven Mile Beach at the southern end of the airport, to be closed to vehicles, due to safety requirements and regulations.
Safety is an essential part of all aircraft operations and extension of the runway closer to the road means the required distance between aircraft and vehicles no longer exists.
“A new road, Grueber Ave will provide access to the Tasman Highway for the Seven Mile Beach community and will be operational prior to the closure of Surf Road,” Mr Parry said.
“A new pedestrian and cycle way will be constructed alongside the section of Surf Road that is to be closed, so that non-vehicular access can continue. We regret that we do need to close a section of Surf Road, however safety is our number one priority.”
The extension of the runway also means that additional navigational lights will be placed in Barilla Bay and that a sand dune near the southern end of the runway will also be altered to allow for safe operations of aircraft.
“HIAPL takes its environmental responsibilities very seriously and extensive studies have been undertaken to ensure these changes have minimal environmental impact,” Mr Parry said.
Construction works will be scheduled to minimise any disruption to airport operations, and flights will continue as normal. Updates on works and any impacts to our visitors will be placed on the airport’s website at www.hobartairport.com.au.
HIAPL will shortly be releasing the 2015 Master Plan outlining the Airport’s plans for the next 5 and 20 year periods and a Major Development Plan for the runway extension. Both documents will be open for public comment through a three month public consultation period.
HIAPL will submit these plans to the Australian Government in October and November 2015.