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The next 20 years and beyond at Auckland Airport

23 March 2006

The next 20 years... and beyond... at Auckland Airport

Forty years since Auckland Airport's official opening, Auckland International Airport Limited (AIAL) has revealed the future shape of New Zealand's gateway airport with the release of its 20-year masterplan review.

Using earlier airport planning research the two-year masterplan review (which included consultation with key stakeholders) charts the direction of airport development to 2025 and beyond. The review integrates passenger and aircraft forecasts, demand projections, terminal development and land use.

For masterplanning purposes, by 2025 passenger movements are projected to reach 24 million annually, (15.3 million international: 8.6 million domestic) up from the current 11 million. Aircraft movements are projected to reach 223,500 each year (76,000 international; 147,500 domestic).

The review concludes that Auckland Airport has the aeronautical, commercial and land capacity to accommodate the anticipated aviation growth in the Auckland region for the next 20 years - and well beyond.

AIAL chief executive officer Don Huse, says "that as a 'world-leading airport enterprise' serving the Auckland region and New Zealand it is crucial that Auckland Airport's facilities are efficient, effective and internationally competitive. Comprehensive long term planning is required so our airport can be developed incrementally to meet growing demand. The masterplan provides the "road map" that ensures Auckland Airport continues to operate in a sustainable, responsible and fiscally prudent manner."

Since corporatisation in 1988, passenger numbers have increased from 4,750,000 to 11,256,000 in 2005. During this time, AIAL has undertaken a substantial staged investment programme that has progressively expanded and upgraded both aeronautical and commercial facilities and services.

Currently, the company is in the final stages of rehabilitating the main runway and widening it for use by the new large aircraft, the 555 seat, A380. Recent development at the international terminal includes completing new hard stands for aircraft; expansion of check-in facilities as well as a new upper level on the existing pier and a new hold stow baggage screening system.

AIAL is also proceeding with plans to expand arrivals processing at the international terminal, including additional retail facilities. Plans are also in development to upgrade and expand the domestic terminal facilities. These key projects will be completed during the next two years.

"This masterplan provides a high level, strategic blueprint for AIAL's business and facilities development for the medium to long term. It is a living document and will be reviewed periodically. It will be used to ensure we provide for the safe, secure and seamless movement of aircraft, passengers and freight to 2025, and well beyond."

AIAL owns around 1,500 hectares of land. This provides the capacity for both aeronautical and commercial developments over the long term.

Looking out beyond ten years, it is thought that a single terminal precinct will be developed on an incremental basis in response to demand. This will incorporate an expanded international terminal with a second pier, as well as new domestic terminal facilities located close by. An integrated domestic and international terminal precinct will be developed over time with provision for a public transport centre, car parking and upmarket hotel accommodation.

The construction of a new runway, to the north of the existing runway and terminal complex, will occur in stages. Initially, it will provide for small turboprop aircraft operations from around 2010. As demand increases it can be extended to a total length of 2,150 metres. This would allow larger jet aircraft operations for domestic and some international services. The northern runway development is provided for in the Manukau City district plan.

"An integral part of the masterplanning process has been the ongoing consultation with internal airport stakeholders. The airlines, the government border agencies and the airfreight and logistics operators have all been involved. Their contribution has been absolutely invaluable. It has been greatly appreciated."

Chief executive, Don Huse, emphasised "that all development on airport is undertaken only when there is a compelling business case based on rigorous analysis and in particular, on careful assessment of the demand environment."

"Auckland International Airport began operations in 1966. It has been an eventful 40 years. The masterplan provides a "road map" to the future. It has flexibility built into it. This will ensure the dynamics of the aviation industry for the next 20, 30, 40 years...and beyond can be taken in account. The objective is that Auckland Airport be developed and operated in the most efficient and effective way possible - now, and into the future."

The masterplan is available on the Auckland Airport website:

  • Airport Masterplan
  • ENDS

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