ZB

Queenstown Airport pays the price for tourism growth

Author
Adam Walker,
Publish Date
Wed, 15 Jul 2015, 8:02pm
Queenstown Airport will expand their runway this summer, paving the way for more evening flights. (Supplied)
Queenstown Airport will expand their runway this summer, paving the way for more evening flights. (Supplied)

Queenstown Airport pays the price for tourism growth

Author
Adam Walker,
Publish Date
Wed, 15 Jul 2015, 8:02pm

Queenstown Airport has had to pay the price for the region's growth as a tourist destination.

Hundreds of thousands of dollars of upgrading work has had to be undertaken due to the hefty nature of the jets arriving from overseas. 

The airport has just had to put down a new overlay after the previous one installed in 2010 started to crack up.

This occurred because the number of size of planes visiting the resort far exceeded the airport's estimations.

But as Michael Clay from Queenstown Airport explains they've got big goals this summer. Late night flights are set to be the next hurdle the airport is looking to jump.

"Our project this summer is to widen the runway from 30 metres to 45. So that's part of us preparing for evening flights, and that's where we get to use our full consented window of six in the morning til 10 at night."

Clay admits activity since 2010 has far outweighed their original estimate.

"We've been a victim of the area's success in a way. We've had a huge exponential growth in air traffic and tourism here, and as a result of that the mix of aircrafts has changed a great deal over the last five years."