Tenants furious at EIS change
to halve the size of the existing Sunshine Coast Airport runway would destroy the ability to offer an operationally diversified aerospace and aviation environment to support the region’s growth for the next half-century.
Sunshine Coast Regional Airport Tenants Association members said reduction of the runway’s length to 800m would render it usable only for sports and light aircraft.
Meanwhile, Mudjimba Residents Association has questioned what it considered a conflict of interest in Sunshine Coast Council being the appital, proving authority for the airport master plan.
The association would prefer approval to be the responsibility of a State Government.
It also remained concerned at the lack of detail about the 99-year lease agreement between the council and Palisade. It met last week with the Co-ordinator General to address issues of concern about what it sees as significant changes to the Environmental Impact Statement and Additional Environmental Impact Statement. President Martin Peelgrane said the 175m shift in the southeast threshold of the new runway might appear to provide some mitigation of the adverse noise impact on properties in Mudjimba.
However, he said the proposed extension of the runway about 400m to the southeast would permit planes to take off to the northwest under full thrust, from a point 400m closer to Mudjimba than the relocated threshold.
SCRATA spokesman Joe McAlinden (pictured) said the single-runway configuration now being planned would arguably be operationally less superior than the two-runway configuration.
“The current runway 18/36 is owned by the community, has no debt attached to it and is a community-owned asset much the same as a park, hosPLANS school or library,” Mr McAlinden said.
“The advice given to the Mayor and Crs Dwyer and Robinson 10 days ago appears to be a convenient attempt to cover up decisions that were made behind closed doors a long time ago, at least dating back to January 2017 but likely before then.”
He said the decision would also cause additional cost for flight-crew training because it was outside their experience of Standard Operating Procedure.
“The likelihood of Code E aircraft ever operating at Sunshine Coast Airport is so small that it is probably immeasurable,” Mr McAlinden said.
“This aircraft type will more likely operate at Brisbane International Airport.”