The $8 million project is jointly funded by the NSW and Federal Governments and aims to achieve another 20 years of safe and reliable air access to the World Heritage listed Island.
Lord Howe Island Board CEO, Penny Holloway, said today that consultation had been undertaken with the Island community and QantasLink and that a decision on airport runway closures had been made.
“The airport is a vital link to the mainland for residents and tourists, so it is essential that it be maintained to the appropriate standards.
“To allow the most efficient and safe construction operation during the re-surfacing of the runway, it is necessary to close the runway for a period of time.
“To coincide with lower tourist numbers in the winter period and a smaller number of flights, the decision has made to undertake the re-surfacing works in June and July 2015. The first period of runway closure will be from Monday 15 June to Thursday 18 June 2015, and will then follow on again for the following three weeks commencing Monday 22 June, 29 June and 6 July 2015.
“QantasLink will re-schedule flights for this period, so that the same number of seats is available to the Island during a week, but the flights will arrive and depart on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday. If the scheduled flights are unable to occur on these three days, the Monday morning has been set aside as a contingency to make up the extra flights as required.
“The Board is working with the runway project’s designers and project managers to ensure that the project meets these timeframes, and that the huge logistical effort required to undertake a large construction project, on an Island 600 kilometres off Port Macquarie, is well planned to deal with all known contingencies”, Ms Holloway said.
Media contact: Penny Holloway, CEO, Lord Howe Island Board, 02 6563 2066