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Second airport for Canberra?

By johnboy - 3 May 2010 38

The ABC informs us that $50k worth of government money is going to be spent doing a feasibility study for a new airstrip at Williamsdale to accommodate the region’s private flyers.

This would be the private flyers who want to drive 30 minutes to have a fly, but not 60 minutes to drive to Goulburn.

The private flyers who can afford to buy or rent aeroplanes.

Government money for everyone it seems.

What’s Your opinion?


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38 Responses to
Second airport for Canberra?
dvaey 5:33 pm 03 May 10

franzipami said :

Actually putting down surveyors pegs won’t happen for at least 5 years or so IMO

A similar aerodrome has started up near Adaminaby, this effort took about 12 months of behind-the-scenes work and about 6 months of construction work. The pilots did a lot of the work themselves (mostly on weeeknds between full-time jobs) erecting the hangars and offices. If Stanhope wants to get this aerodrome up and running quickly, operations could start out there within 18 months I believe.

Grail said :

What sort of issues would prevent an aerodrome being constructed at Williamsdale, apart from it being under a holding/landing path for commercial traffic to Canberra Airport?

One thought that comes to mind is the (proposed) power substation near Williamsdale. From memory this was to be situated close to the aerodrome land, so re-routing powerlines or access roads may need to be considered. A lot of the issues were already covered in the first feasability study which I linked at comment #3

sloppery 3:07 pm 03 May 10

Grail said :

Does anyone actually enjoy the commute out to Brindabella Business Park?

It’s better than the commute to the gaol…

Grail 3:00 pm 03 May 10

What sort of issues would prevent an aerodrome being constructed at Williamsdale, apart from it being under a holding/landing path for commercial traffic to Canberra Airport? There are tiny aerodromes at practically every other country town in Australia, why should Canberra miss out?

I expect these are the “feasibility” questions to be answered in the study, not “is there a business case”.

Woody Mann-Caruso 2:33 pm 03 May 10

This is like those special snowflakes who insisted we keep vast tracts of land undeveloped so little Porsche can ride her pony on the weekends for free. “I can afford a Landrover, a horse float, saddle, boots, lessons, vet bills, a helmet and agistment – but I demand taxpayers support my unusual and expensive hobby, and refuse to drive an extra half hour to alleviate that burden.”

jase! 1:48 pm 03 May 10

well done johnboy on playing the elitist card on this story

the facilities at goulburn are not that flash anyway and landing on an average driveway would be easier. Also there is no way to do a commercial licence at Goulburn. why have a strip there when we could just use the one at Young or temora or coota

perhaps it has something to do with the fact that a city of 300,000 can’t support a flight school due to the costs associated with the airport and airspace charges.

just remember the vast majority of pilots that fly you out of Canberra were once “private flyers”.

obligatory conflict of interest note: I am a student pilot who now has to travel 150+km for a flight lesson

goose 1:38 pm 03 May 10

I hear that the Canberra Aeroclub is close to getting a AOC & CFI?????
I might start teaching again 🙂

caf 1:38 pm 03 May 10

One presumes that it would be intended to be at least self-funding, if not profitable. Hence a “feasibility study”?

DeadlySchnauzer 1:06 pm 03 May 10

I think I would speak for many inner north residents when i say… Hooray! no more light aircraft flying over my house!

harvyk1 11:59 am 03 May 10

Or more to the point the people who want to learn to fly, and yet Canberra Airport doesn’t have a flying school anymore…

franzipami 11:56 am 03 May 10

Firstly it would not be an airport, that has connotations towards Regular Public Transport operation, this is more of an aerodrome type operation IE small recreational type weekend warrior aircraft.

Currently Canberra has opportunity for persons wishing to learn to fly or upgrade their existing qualifications. Weather you support the proposal or not (and you tone suggests the latter) it would provide a few extra non APS jobs to the region and sustain and develop a community resource.

Actually putting down surveyors pegs won’t happen for at least 5 years or so IMO and by then who knows what the aviation scene will look like around Canberra.

LlamaFrog 11:54 am 03 May 10

this would be so welcome, would love to move away from canberra airport. It is getting less and less enjoyable having a space there.

eyeLikeCarrots 11:48 am 03 May 10

Yeah, damn those people who are currently working full time and eating cornflakes for 3 meals a day to pay for flight school.

dvaey 11:39 am 03 May 10

So, are they going to have a new study, or simply republish the old one from 2004? I remember this site being proposed almost a decade ago, and Stanhope did a few studies and shuffled his feet back then too.

Im not sure where you get the 30 minute estimate from, but Williamsdale is 15km down Monaro Highway which is 100km/hr (and rarely congested South of Canberra), its barely more than 10min.

OP: “The private flyers who can afford to buy or rent aeroplanes.”

Private lessons and hire can work out to about $90/hr through some flying schools. To learn to drive a car youre looking at around $70/hr. To buy a small recreational plane, youre looking between 10-15k used or about 50k for a new craft in kit form.

Also, you generally find if pilots spend money on their vehicle its for safetys sake, if drivers spend money on their vehicle its for appearance or performance more often than safety.. just a different mentality.

These costs arent that far away from the costs of learning-in/buying a car, except that a lot of people who complete driver training should never be allowed on the road, whereas flight training generally knocks out the idiots pretty quick.

Grail 10:59 am 03 May 10

The more business we take away from Canberra Airport, the better for everyone.

Jim Snow overstepped the mark when he started building offices and retail services out at the airport. Lack of accountability to the local government doesn’t mean his actions won’t impact the local community.

If I was benevolent dictator for life, the airports would all be resumed, non-aviation-related structures would be razed, and the capitalist pigs would be executed in public as a message to… oops, overstepped the mark a little myself there didn’t I? Just ignore that razing bit…

Does anyone actually enjoy the commute out to Brindabella Business Park?

Skyring 9:42 am 03 May 10

Well, no. It’s the private flyers who want to fly or learn to fly out of Canberra “International” Airport, but can no longer afford to.

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