Ballina Shire Mayor David Wright and Ballina Byron Gateway Airport manager Julie Stewart.
Ballina Shire Mayor David Wright and Ballina Byron Gateway Airport manager Julie Stewart.

‘Significant amount of risk’ in $23M Ballina project

MORE time will be needed to progress plans for the runway widening at the Ballina Byron Gateway Airport, the council has revealed.

The $23 million widening project is critical to the future of the airport and its ongoing financial viability.

The runway will need to be widened from its current 30m to 45m, to allow for fleets of Airbus A321s to take off and land there.

A review of the council's capital expenditure program explained that consultants had been engaged to help prepare the planning processes.

"Council has made an application to the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science seeking an extension to the timeframe to submit all approval requirements for the allocated $10 million grant," the report states.

"This extension application was required due to the complexities associated with the planning approvals.

"There is still a significant amount of risk with this project, in respect to obtaining planning approvals and the overall cost, and regular updates will be provided on how the project is advancing."

 

Ballina Byron Gateway Airport tarmac.
Ballina Byron Gateway Airport tarmac.

 

Meanwhile, concept designs for the airport's car park, solar and boom gates have been confirmed.

"Detailed designs are now being developed with a focus on minimising project costs by utilising as much of the existing infrastructure as possible," the report states.

"The tender process is scheduled to commence in December 2020 with the assessment reported to the February 2021 Ordinary meeting."


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