Green light for above ground airport station to ensure airport rail supports third runway passenger growth

Melbourne Airport will support an above-ground station for the proposed airport rail line to ensure the public transport link is in place for the millions of additional passengers that will use the gateway when the third runway is opened.

Melbourne Airport Chief Executive Officer Lorie Argus said the airport recognised the need to get on with the rail link in the interests of travellers, the city, Victoria and the airport’s expansion.

“Victorians have waited long enough for an airport rail line. We will work with the Victorian Government to deliver their preferred above-ground station at the airport so the rail line can become reality,” Ms Argus said.

“With an estimated 45 million travellers a year predicted to be using our airport when the third runway opens, the rail link will support a massive increase in passenger numbers and billions of dollars in additional economic activity for Victoria.

“While Melbourne Airport has consistently advocated for an underground station, we are prepared to compromise on our position to ensure we have more transport options in place for the millions of new passengers that will visit Victoria and the airport precinct’s expanding workforce.

“The third runway project will allow for the growth of our existing airlines as well as attracting new carriers. There will be fewer delays with an additional runway and more flight options for travellers, putting downward pressure on air fares.”

Melbourne Airport would welcome the immediate recommencement of discussions with government over the airport station with an initial focus on its design, the sequencing of construction works and redress for the land required for the above ground option.

The airport currently welcomes around 100,000 passengers a day and is the largest employment hub outside of the Melbourne CBD. More than 210,000 passengers will use the airport every day in less than 20 years and the expanded airport is forecast to add $5.9 billion to the state economy every year and support 51,000 jobs.

Melbourne Airport will spend about $3 billion building an additional north-south runway to accommodate more than 76 million passengers by 2042. It will take more than four years to construct the third runway and employ more than 500 people during construction.

The development plan for the third runway is currently before the Federal Government for approval.