Atlantis Marcoola beachfront apartments are located a 5 minute drive from the Sunshine Coast Airport. We at Atlantis are super excited about the
extension of the Sunshine Coast Airport and look forward to welcoming more travelers from all over our country and internationally to our little slice
A NEW runway, new terminal and new demand for our region loom as key pillars upon which the Coast's soon to be expanded airport will build its future.
The new 2450m runway is due to open in 2020, after an extensive redevelopment process which will deliver a new east-west runway capable of holding Code
E aircraft and an expanded runway apron.
The $347 million expansion project is set to be finished next year, with the airport to be fully operational by the end of 2020.
Tourism bodies have been excited by the opportunities the new runway has been touted as bringing, including expanding destinations domestically and abroad.
Freight opportunities have also been spruiked as a major benefit, with the opportunity to fill the belly of large passenger jets with homegrown produce
and send it around the globe a potentially lucrative one for the region's producers.
Sunshine Coast Airport CEO Andrew Brodie said regions around Australia often needed a "catalyst to propel them forward economically”.
"Major infrastructure is usually critical for development and the Sunshine Coast has an unprecedented range of projects committed that have the potential
to establish the region as one of Australia's fastest growing and most prosperous regions for decades to come,” he said.
He said the new runway and airport upgrades had been crucial in stimulating other large-scale projects, such as new hotels and convention centres, and
would encourage new business to set up in the region.
Mr Brodie tipped higher education and tertiary sectors to benefit from the stimulation, as international students would be drawn to the new Sunshine Coast
He said the evolution of the aviation industry over the past 30 years had been "remarkable” and it had never been more affordable to fly.
He said aircraft were now more technically advanced, quieter and more fuel-efficient, which had "changed the sector considerably”.
He said restrictions on capacity into the Sunshine Coast Airport, due to the existing runway which dated back to 1983, meant locals had been unable to
benefit from those technical advancements, but that would change when the new runway launched.
As far as challenges facing the airport over the next three decades, one word stood out as the most important factor in the facility's future: demand.
"By the time we have a new runway and upgraded airport precinct we will have one of the best-quality regional airports in Australia,” Mr Brodie said.
"It will certainly boost our capacity to attract new services from further afield in Australia and Asia Pacific, but you must create the demand first.”
He said it was vital to create the demand for the Coast as a destination, as airlines flew to markets, not to airports.
"Every region around Australia wants to attract more domestic and international airline services, so it is important that our business and tourism sectors
work together to influence both government, airline and international wholesaler key decision makers to position the Sunshine Coast as a destination
of choice,” Mr Brodie said.
The airport's newly-appointed boss said the new Qantas direct services from Sydney were a significant breakthrough for the Coast, as it provided travellers
with seamless, one-ticket solutions for international travel to and from the region.
"Expanding and diversifying the Sunshine Coast's travel market is important because if airlines see that we have strong business and conference sectors,
in addition to leisure, then it's a far more compelling argument for expanding services to our region,” he said.
He tipped the level of corporate travel to the region to "rise sharply” in the coming years, with more than $10 billion in public and private investment
committed on the Coast.
Upgrades to The Events Centre in Caloundra and the new Sunshine Coast Convention Centre opening at Novotel Twin Waters next month were also hoped to stimulate
conference and events travel.
Increased freight capacity from the region has long been held up as one of the supporting arguments for the airport upgrades.
Mr Brodie said at present, aircraft were "severely limited” in their capacity to carry full loads of both passengers and freight.
"The new runway will enable planes to carry substantial freight, as well as passengers, and that will make the Sunshine Coast a far more attractive option
for airlines,” he said.
"We have outstanding fresh produce across the region and there's no doubt that the new runway will stimulate greater export opportunities.”
Mr Brodie said it was important to note they weren't looking at dedicated freight carriers to operate out of the new airport, but instead, hoped to fill
the holds of passenger aircraft with local produce.
"That is our priority from a freight point of view,” he said.
"The freight strategy for the airport will largely depend on the services we can attract to the region once the new runway is operational.
"Certainly, northern areas will become an attractive option for us, and by being able to combine good passenger and freight loads we will significantly
enhance our competitive opportunities.”