Gold Coast Airport Unveils New Master Plan

Len Varley
Len Varley - Assistant Editor
4 Min Read
Render of proposed Gold Coast Airport layout.
Image Credit: Gold Coast Airport

Gold Coast Airport, a bustling hub in Queensland, Australia, has revealed ambitious plans for its future development.

The airport’s 2024 Preliminary Draft Master Plan paints a vivid picture of a transformed precinct, set to become more than just a travel gateway.

With the addition of a retail village, health and wellness hub, and conference and tech center, the airport aims to redefine its role within the community and enhance the passenger experience.

Introduction to Gold Coast Airport

Gold Coast Airport, owned by Queensland Airports Limited, stands as the sixth busiest airport in Australia.

Previously known as Coolangatta Airport, it is located on the southern end of the Gold Coast, roughly 90 kilometers south of Brisbane.

The Gold Coast Airport is known as the gateway to Australia’s premier tourist destinations. It provides easy access to the beautiful Gold Coast and Byron Bay hinterland, and offers onward passage to 27 destinations worldwide.

With over 700 flights per week, the airport is the second largest in both Queensland and New South Wales.

Currently catering to over 6.2 million passengers annually, it plays a significant role in the local economy, contributing $514 million each year.

Vision for Growth: The 2024 Preliminary Draft Master Plan

The cornerstone of Gold Coast Airport’s future lies in its 2024 Preliminary Draft Master Plan. This comprehensive document outlines the airport’s strategic vision and sustainable growth objectives for the next two decades.

With a keen focus on the period leading up to the 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the plan sets ambitious targets for expansion and development.

The Reimagined Precinct

Under the master plan, Gold Coast Airport seeks to reinvent itself as a multifaceted destination.

By integrating a diverse range of amenities, including a retail village, health and wellness hub, and conference and tech center, the airport aims to create a vibrant precinct that caters to the needs of both travelers and local residents.

Technology and Accessibility

Central to the airport’s vision is the integration of cutting-edge technology to enhance the passenger experience.

Plans include biometrics-enabled check-in systems and a fully digitalized journey that anticipates and meets travelers’ needs.

Gold Coast Airport prioritizes accessibility. It actively works to seamlessly connect the airport to the city through public transport infrastructure initiatives.

Commitment to Sustainability

Gold Coast Airport is dedicated to sustainability, aiming to achieve Net Zero Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions by 2030.

Initiatives will include the installation of solar panels and the promotion of electric vehicles. This supports the airport’s continued commitment to environmental stewardship.

Additionally, preparations for the adoption of Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) signal a proactive approach to reducing carbon emissions in aviation.

Regulatory Compliance: The Airport Master Plan Process

Gold Coast Airport is mandated to prepare and publish an Airport Master Plan every eight years. This is carried out in accordance with the Airports Act 1996,

The current draft, open for public consultation until June 14, 2024, adheres to the regulatory framework outlined in the act.

The first steps are the review and approval by the Federal Minister of Infrastructure and Transport. The final master plan will then guide the airport’s development trajectory.

The full Plan can be accessed on the airport website.


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By Len Varley Assistant Editor
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Now the Assistant Editor with AviationSource, I have almost 40 years' experience in aviation, starting in Australian flight crew and training. I worked as CFI/Chief Pilot with 2 organisations and was also a CASA approved testing officer and aeronautics lecturer. This led to components procurement for civil operators and the RAAF, and then maintenance programming with a global airborne geo-survey operator.