THE Australian Government has approved a revised development plan for Darwin International Airport saying it will provide more check-in desks and boarding gates to cater for growth in passenger numbers.
The $60 million development plan, scheduled to be completed by the end of 2013, will see the floor area increase by more than half to help cater for an expected 2.9 million annual passengers in 2016.
Announcing the approval, Transport and Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese said transfers between domestic and international flights will be further streamlined with more space for airline lounges, gate lounge seating and improved disabled access.
The development plan for the proposed terminal expansion project was originally approved by the government in 2009. However, due to changes in the scope and configuration of the terminal expansion project, the plan has been subsequently revised.
A master plan for the airport, which sets out the strategic direction of the airport for the next two decades, was approved by the Minister last December.
As well as major redevelopment of the passenger terminal, the master plan also proposed the progressive upgrade of taxiways and general aviation facilities and a new access road linking McMillans Road and Osgood Drive.
With Darwin International Airport "a key economic driver for northern Australia", Mr Albanese said the terminal expansion will provide opportunities for growth on new and existing routes, including services to regional and remote communities.
Darwin Airport has 50 days to make the changes to the Darwin International Airport Terminal Expansion Major Development Plan available to the public.