Dec 9, 2008

Melbourne Airport’s Master Plan approved

Melbourne Airport’s Master Plan approved

MEDIA RELEASE

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

December 9 2008

Today I approved Melbourne Airport’s Master Plan which sets out its strategic direction and intended uses for the next 20 years.

The majority of submissions received on the preliminary draft Master Plan were very positive. Inevitably some issues were raised about the impact of commercial developments on the airport and of aircraft operations.

In this regard, I have asked the Airport operator – Australia Pacific Airports (Melbourne) Pty Ltd (APAM) – to ensure the commitments it has made in the Master Plan are delivered including:

  • An undertaking to conduct rigorous economic impact analysis in respect of proposed future retail developments;
  • The development, in consultation with the Victorian and local governments, of a ground transport plan; and
  • The ongoing support of noise mitigation measures including the Melbourne Airport Noise Abatement Committee.

Key features of the Master Plan include:

  • Construction of rapid exit taxiways for Runway 16/34 and Runway 09/27;
  • Provision of additional passenger aircraft gates and apron areas;
  • Extension of Runway 09/27 to the west;
  • Possible construction of a third runway and associated taxiways;
  • Upgrading of the domestic and international terminals;
  • Implementation of the approved Mixed Use Development in the Airport Entry site and further development of the site with office, warehouse and retail activities;
  • Progressive provision of serviced sites for airline maintenance and aviation services in the southern areas of the airport; and
  • Provision of an additional hotel in proximity to the terminals.

Proposed developments will proceed in response to demand.

The Airports Act 1996 requires each operator of a leased Federal airport to submit a draft Master Plan for the Minister’s approval. Master Plans are subject to a thorough public consultation process and must take into account issues raised during the comment period.

Separate major development plans must be prepared if the airport wishes to undertake major development work.

APAM is now required to publish the final Master Plan within 50 business days of approval and make copies of the plan available to the public.

On 10 November 2008 I also approved a new airport environment strategy for Melbourne Airport. This strategy complements the Master Plan and sets out APAM’s plans for managing the environment at the site for the next five years.

The new environment strategy provides a range of commitments and initiatives that will aid in reducing the impact of airport operations on the local environment including measurable commitments to reducing energy and water consumption.

APAM has committed to completing a carbon footprint assessment for the airport by 2009 mapping a path towards zero carbon emissions. The Australian Government has made a priority of tackling climate change and I commend APAM’s pro-active approach in addressing this important issue.

APAM has a 50 year lease – with an additional 49 year option – to operate Melbourne Airport.

Melbourne Airport is Australia’s second largest airport, with more than one in five of the nation’s air travellers passing through its terminals each year. It is an important transport gateway and freight link for both the Victorian and national economies.