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Auckland, Christchurch and Wanaka Scoop Honours

11 September 2015
MEDIA RELEASE

Auckland Airport, Christchurch Airport and Wanaka Airport Scoop Honours at New Zealand Airports Conference

Auckland Airport has been named BECA Major Airport of the Year at the 2015 New Zealand Airports Conference being held in Taupo.

Wanaka Airport was named BECA Regional Airport of the Year and Simon Hollinger, General Manager, Operations, at Hamilton Airport, was named BECA New Zealand Airport Personality of the Year.

Christchurch Airport won the BECA Airport Project of the Year Award for its specialised pavement maintenance project on the airfield.

On presenting the Awards Mr John Marsh, Global Market Director, Airports, BECA, said that “we are delighted to be sponsorsing these awards which recognise and support national and international best practise in New Zealand airports”.

“As the recipient of the Major Airport Award we congratuate Auckland on its exceptional acheivements which have resulted in impressive growth over recent years in its aviation, commercial and retail activities."

“Encouraging new routes from Asia, introducing new destinations and promoting New Zealand as a tourist destination, have strongly positioned Auckland Airport growing tourism and trade for New Zealand."

New Zealand Airports Association (NZ Airports) Chief Executive Kevin Ward said: “The judges were particularly impressed by the collaborative approach adopted by Auckland Airport with airlines, aviation security and border agencies."

“The airport has been recognised for 7 years in a row by SKYTRAX as the Best Airport in the Australia/Pacific region, amongst many other industry awards."

A stand out reason for awarding Christchurch Airport the NZ Airports Project of the Year Award for its Airfield Pavement Maintenance Works, was the special challenge of closing two runways at the same time, for the first time in almost 30, years for planned maintenance.

“The Christchurch Airport team was faced with a range of pavement maintenance projects including the night time closure for two nights in February to allow for the intersecton of the two runways to be resurfaced,” said Mr Marsh.

“On both nights the runways were successfully handed back to operation on time, with work completed and with zero harm across a big team of people and machines - a great achievement and example of planning and collaboration,” said Mr Ward.

The decisive factor in Wanaka Airport winning the regional title was its successful completion of the launch of the NASA scientific space balloon.

In December 2013 the airport was selected by NASA as the site of a scientific space balloon launch and after many months of planning, as well as considerable investment in infrastructure, the space balloon was successfully launched in March 2015.

Mr Ward said: “Led by Wanaka Airport Manager, Ralph Fegan, this one project has generated mulitple positives including the significant economic and tourism benefits for the region and a secured ongoing role in the NASA balloon launch program."

“As the recepient of the 2015 Personality of the Year Award, Simon Hollinger’s great reputation for collaboration with other airports, airlines and many agency and stakeholder parties across all projects has been recognised” said Mr Marsh.

“Simon has worked at Hamilton Airport since 1999. In this time he has coped with international flights starting and stopping, and the commencement of new airlines such as Kiwi Air to name a few."

Mr Ward said “Simon is a very deserving winner as a member of the Hamilton Airport team as well as a long standing member of the Airports Association as an active participant and as a Board member”.

Ends

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