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Australia's fastest growing airport to become Asia Pacific business centre

Mining & Resources

Adelaide Airport has revealed its 30-year vision to become a business centre for the Asia Pacific region.

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The plan includes a strong increase in international traffic and $1 billion worth of infrastructure investment in the next five years.

The investment will be spent on tripling aerobridge capacity, an expanded business district and an embedded hotel, according to Mark Young, the managing director of Adelaide Airport Ltd.

“Adelaide Airport's vision is to be a top tier Airport Business centre in Asia Pacific, recognised for delivering exceptional outcomes to our customers, partners, shareholders and community,” Young said at the launch of the 30-year plan.

“For us, top tier doesn't mean being the biggest. What it does mean is we will exceed the expectations of an airport our size in the Asia Pacific region.”

“Our international services are up by 23% in 2013/14 – more than three times our nearest competitor. Over the past three years our international seat capacity has increased by almost 70 per cent.”

Direct flights to Los Angeles are a significant addition that will open the US market to passengers and business. Direct flights to Thailand, Vietnam and Christchurch are also on the cards.

These new links to the Asia Pacific are in focus after a recent scheduling change – which allows for same-day connections to and from 17 cities in Mainland China through Hong Kong – produced a 31 per cent increase in the China market.

Most of the growth is from inbound Chinese travellers.

Adelaide Airport currently brings in just shy of a million international passengers and this will increase to 2.8 million by 2034 according to airport forecasts.

The increased traffic will be handled by more than tripling the number of aerobridges from 14 to 52 by 2044. These will accommodate next generation aircraft such as the A380 and Dreamliner.

The airport will seek developer and owner-occupier partners to complete potential developments, including the terminal expansion, additional car parking, airport hotel, Aviation Logistics Centre and more.

An expanded 100 hectares for the Airport Business District will combine zones for commercial, aviation, retail and leisure activities. The business parks currently host 140 tenants.

The district will feature industry clusters for mining and resources, freight and logistics, technology, office and warehousing, healthcare, government enterprises and emergency services.

There will also be a significant expansion of office space in the district, including workspace for 3500 people. The airport is already the largest single site employment precinct in South Australia, responsible for 8,700 direct jobs.

Adelaide Airport is currently seeking partners to build a 200 room four-star hotel on the site within the next five years. It will be located between the terminal and a new multi-level car park.

There will be a focus on business facilities, including function and conference space, as well as bars and restaurants. It will directly connect to a new light-rail system running to the Adelaide CBD.

Adelaide Airport now hosts eight international carriers that link South Australia to 50 locations throughout Asia and Europe, either one-stop or direct.

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