Gold Coast Airport has released plans for a new precinct that will deliver some of the goals outlined in its Preliminary Draft Master Plan, including a retail village, health and wellness club, and a conference and tech centre. 

The document outlines the strategic vision and sustainable growth objectives of the airport and surrounding precinct over the next twenty years, with a more detailed focus on the initial eight years leading up to the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

It is the largest of four airports owned by Queensland Airports Limited and, as the country’s sixth busiest airport, Gold Coast Airport currently welcomes more than 6.2 million passengers a year contributing $514 million to the local economy. 

By 2044, that number is set to soar to around 13 million passengers annually – creating more than $965 million in economic contribution.

Under the plan, Gold Coast Airport seeks to reinvent itself as a destination in its own right – delivering a reimagined precinct that serves the communities of the Gold Coast and northern New South Wales.

Queensland Airports CEO, Amelia Evans, said that the Master Plan vision is to deliver an airport of the future.

“We want to be more than an airport, we’re committed to creating a mixed-use precinct that would further benefit the local community, with the addition of a retail village, health and wellness hub and a conference and tech centre,” Ms Evans said.

“The upgrades proposed under this Master Plan are about embracing innovation and new technologies that will revolutionise air travel and enhance the customer experience.

“We’ve placed a strong focus on accessibility, ensuring the airport precinct is seamlessly connected with the rest of the city with the delivery of a public front-of-terminal plaza servicing both light and heavy rail.” 

Smart aviation technologies being considered as part of the plan include biometrics enabled check-in and a fully digital passenger experience that could anticipate customer behaviour and provide personalised travel suggestions based on travel history.

The Master Plan also reflects Gold Coast Airport’s commitment to sustainability including reaching Net Zero Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 2030.

“This means driving initiatives that will reduce emissions such as the installation of solar panels, facilitating greater use of electric vehicles on the precinct and preparing for the transition to lower carbon aviation practices such as Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).”

Under the Airports Act 1996, Gold Coast Airport is required to prepare and publish an Airport Master Plan that includes the Environment Strategy every eight years. Following public consultation, a Draft Master Plan is submitted to the Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Transport for review and upon approval a Final Master Plan is released.

This 2024 Draft Master Plan has been prepared as per the planning framework prescribed in the Airports Act 1996.

Gold Coast Airport’s 2024 Preliminary Draft Master Plan is open for public consultation and community feedback until 14 June 2024. It is available to download here:

Featured image: A digital rendition of the completed precinct. Image credit: Gold Coast Airport.

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