It will be business as usual at Tauranga Airport as the passenger terminal undergoes a $12.7m expansion and refurbishment over the next 15 months.
This development was approved in 2015 when Tauranga City Council reviewed the Airport Master Plan, which showed the Terminal was operating at capacity and needed to expand to keep pace with the growth of Tauranga.
The successful tenderer is Naylor Love Construction Ltd, a privately owned, national construction company founded in Dunedin in 1910, says airport manager Ray Dumble.
“The project is in the mobilisation stage at present with plans to start work late October and completion due December 2018.”
The floor area of the Terminal will more than double from 1700m2 to 3800m2. This will include developing separate check in and arrival areas and increasing space for back of house operations, allow for future upgrades and a new, larger Air New Zealand Regional Lounge.
The new check in area will have state of the art check in kiosks, a baggage drop belt and a new externally accessed courier and cargo office. The improvements will also result in a shorter walk from the Terminal for boarding and the Airport Café will be increased and improved.
The expansion will accommodate the increase in Air New Zealand passenger volumes and provide for other regional network operators to fly in and out of Tauranga, says Ray.
“The expansion of the terminal will provide us with an internationally competitive regional airport and comes about through high levels of collaboration with the airline industry,” says Ray.
Air New Zealand welcomes the upgrade says the airline's Regional Affairs Manager Ian Collier.
“Tauranga is a key destination for Air New Zealand and one we're focussed on continuing to grow. We welcome the upgrade and expansion of the Tauranga Airport Terminal building and look forward to continuing to work closely with Tauranga City Council as it progresses,” says Ian.
Local Iwi have the role of developing better welcoming and farewell messaging along with creating artwork that will tell a story about some of the local Iwi's history and culture. There will also be coverage of the history of Tauranga Airport dating back to its opening in January 1939.
“The project has a number of challenges not least driving piles in the existing Terminal building down to a depth of 27m due to ground conditions,” says Ray. “Another challenge will be to keep the Terminal operating as normal as possible during construction, with the least amount of inconvenience to the public, tenants and operators. Significant planning has gone into this aspect of the project to date.”
The expansion is intended to meet capacity demands up to and beyond 2027. The project requires no rate funding. The interest and debt servicing will come from the Airports current cash reserves and the Airports commercial revenues going forward.