Melbourne Airport will move forward with plans to build a third runway in a north-south orientation.
The decision follows an extensive planning review and months of meetings with community, government, airlines and regulatory bodies.
The new runway will increase capacity to keep up with Victoria’s growth demands, provide economic benefits to the state and improve traveller experience by creating opportunities to add more destinations and frequent flights.
Melbourne Airport will now spend the next 12-18 months undertaking extensive modelling, assessment and development of approval documentation, with the intent of releasing the Preliminary Draft Major Development Plan (MDP) for public comment in early 2021.
During the planning process, we will continue with our community engagement program, meeting with residents, local government and community leaders to take on board their feedback and concerns.
Following the exhibition period for the MDP, the Commonwealth Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development will assess the MDP and all the public submissions received before making a decision on the application.
If the runway is approved construction could start as early as 2022 with planes operating on the runway by late 2025.
The 3000m long runway is a critical piece of Victorian infrastructure that will not only deliver greater tourism, business and freight opportunities, but will also contribute an additional $16.8 billion per annum to gross state product by 2043.
It will create 300 to 400 jobs during construction and pave the way for airport employment to grow from 20,600 today to more than 35,000 over the next two decades.
Importantly, the third runway will support the city’s population growth by adding much needed capacity to ensure flights can depart and arrive on time. The runway will also allow us to attract more airlines and ultimately new international destinations to Australia’s fastest growing city.
A north-south runway would deliver a number of benefits.
• Greater flight capacity based on airport operations and aircraft taxiing.
• Minimal closures expected based on crosswind modelling.
• Delays the need to construct an east-west runway by more than 20 years. While Melbourne Airport has selected its preferred runway orientation, there are still several steps to go through before approval is granted.
These steps include: