Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall inspects lighting upgrades with Moree Plains Shire Council Executive Projects Manager John Carleton.
Monday, 7 August 2017
$2.5 million upgrade works nearing completion
PILOTS will soon touch down at Moree Regional Airport with added precision, inspect aircraft with extra confidence and link into a vastly improved power generation array, with $2.5 million in upgrades entering their final stages.
Member for Northern Tablelands Adam Marshall recently joined Moree Plains Shire Council inspecting progress on improvements to the airport, now well underway thanks to a combined funding package from all three tiers of government.
The NSW Government has provided $1.5 million, the Federal Government $500,000 and Moree Plain Shire Council $500,000 towards technology and tarmac upgrades.
“In aviation, lights are the first check and last resort for pilots on their landing approach,” Mr Marshall said.
“Upgraded runway lights will help air crews make quick, informed judgments about their angle and height. Thanks to these improvements, runway lights will be brighter and more densely packed, and the airport now boasts a state of the art Precision Approach Path Indicator (PAPI) system for the first time.”
Mr Marshall said the PAPI system allowed pilots to visually check their height relative to the recommended vector, ensuring the aircraft is descending at the appropriate angle.
“Pilots will also be able to conduct pre-flight checks in a well-lit environment thanks to apron parking lights – which will minimise the chance of errors compared to torch-based inspections,” he said.
“With these upgrades now almost complete, we can look forward to improved safety for the 34,000 passengers using Moree’s airport each year, particularly for the popular 7.05 pm flight to Sydney.
“As business passengers typically prefer to travel early in the morning and late evenings, these lights will prove essential to attracting more flights that meet customer demand.”
Construction of lighting upgrades follows the installation of 7.4 kilometres of ducting, which house 10,000 metres of freshly laid cable. A more reliable backup generator has also been installed, reducing downtime in the event of a power failure.
With lighting upgrades expected to be completed within the few weeks, Moree Plains Shire Council will commence upgrades to the runway’s pavement and drainage.
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said the partnership would further promote economic growth for Moree and surrounding towns.
“The upgrade to Moree Regional Airport will play an important role in maintaining and ultimately increasing air services to the town and region,” Mr Coulton said.
“I am pleased that the Federal Government in partnership with the NSW Government and Moree Plains Shire Council has been able to deliver this upgrade.”
Moree Plains Shire Mayor Katrina Humphries said the airport upgrades would help the continued growth of the region as well as complement Moree Plains’ position as the transport and logistic hub of northwest NSW.
“Moree is the juncture of three national highways and a prime location on the Inland Rail – with Moree Regional Airport, we are an important gateway to the skies too,” Cr Humphries said.
“As a community, we fiercely value our safe, reliable air services and we are committed to having the infrastructure to support these. The airport is a major economic driver not just for our town, but for the entire Moree Plains area.
“These upgrades will help our ever growing airport attract more regular air services, particularly during the crucial dusk and dawn hours. Tens of thousands fly into our Shire each year – and more are always welcome.”