May 10, 2013

Release of Wilton technical study

Today I am releasing the technical study into Wilton’s suitability as a second Sydney airport.

This study also explored the use of RAAF Base Richmond for limited civil operations.

Sydney needs a second airport sooner rather than later and there are limited options for a greenfield site.

The study concludes that the development of an airport at Wilton is possible, but would involve environmental and engineering challenges.

The challenges are not insurmountable but we do need to better understand their scale and scope.

Importantly, this study gets the facts on the table.

In response to the technical study, the Government will:

  • conduct geotechnical analysis of the Wilton site to determine the impact mining subsidence could have on an airport development; and
  • commence discussions to explore the possibility of opening up RAAF Base Richmond to civil aviation.

Opening RAAF Base Richmond to civil aviation could ultimately allow 5 million passengers to pass through the airport each year.

While Richmond presents some opportunities for limited civilian operations, it will not stop the need for a greenfield site for Sydney’s second airport.

A second airport is critical for Sydney, New South Wales and Australia and the Government is committed to increasing Sydney’s aviation capacity in a bipartisan and consultative manner.

The report is available at