Gold Coast Airport precinct’s $500 million revamp
Gold Coast Bulletin, By Ryan Keen
Bursting Gold Coast Airport is not just enlarging to cope with demand, it is upping customer service levels — and calling on the city to join it. The city gateway, which recently completed $86 million worth of airside expansion work to its taxiway and aircraft apron, is now shifting its focus to overhauling the terminal. It will be expanded to the south and become a three-level structure with provision for aerobridges. The work, under the airport’s Project LIFT expansion plan to cope with ever-growing demand, is expected to start before the end of the year. Queensland Airports Ltd CEO Chris Mills said half a billion dollars would be invested into the airport precinct in the next few years as part of the redevelopment plans.
Chris Mills. Photo: Steve Holland
Mr Mills has acknowledged to the Gold Coast Bulletin in the past the airport was operating “at or above capacity” at times.
Project LIFT is expected to deliver an economic impact of $426 million in Gross Regional Product and an increase in tourism expenditure in the region of $62 million a year. Work is also expected to start on hotel development at the airport precinct before the end of this year.
The Gold Coast Airport. Photo: James Tod
Submissions by airport stakeholders and the community have now been incorporated into a revised draft Major Development Plan for a 192-room Rydges-branded hotel and submitted to the Federal Government for approval. The expansion can’t come soon enough for the airport’s top brass or Gold Coasters. In a Gold Coast Bulletin Golden Age survey, 83 per cent of respondents said the airport should be expanded.
Asked how they rated the airport terminal, seven per cent gave it an “excellent”, 44 per cent voted “good”, 32 per cent ticked “fair” and 18 per cent rated it “below average”.
The Rydges Airport Hotel. Photo: Supplied
Mr Mills is also launching a rally cry for the city to maintain the impressive customer service offered up citywide during the Commonwealth Games.
“The lift in customer service we saw right across the Gold Coast in March and April was one of the key (Games) highlights,” Mr Mills said.
Games volunteers dubbed Games Shapers were central to that, he said.
The terminal’s interior.
“The feedback from visitors about the warm and helpful welcome they received during the Games was overwhelmingly positive. This major event provided the much-needed impetus for us to improve customer service.
“It should also lead us to conclude that we should lift the standard consistently, not just during the Games.”
How the terminal will eventually look.
Story via: Gold Coast Bulletin