“We’ve invested around $2.66 billion in airport improvements since 2002, and plan to invest a further $1.2 billion over the next five years,”Sydney Airport managing director and chief executive officer Kerrie Mather said.
“We’re pleased that our investment in services and facilities has been recognised by our 38.5 million passengers a year and our airline customers with higher overall quality of service ratings.”
The ACCC reports Sydney Airport strengthened its ratings in areas including:
- Improved overall average quality of service rating, encompassing passengers and airlines;
- Airlines’ ratings of the standard and availability of services and facilities such as runways and aircraft parking improved, reflecting airport investment in airfield development, infrastructure and service quality;
- Runway standard significantly improved since the introduction of new high intensity approach lighting to improve visibility in poor weather;
- Passengers rated check-in times and flight information displays as ‘good’; and
- Fewer 15 minute-plus flight delays compared to the previous year.
“In the nine months since the ACCC reporting period ended in June 2014, Sydney Airport has further invested to improve our efficiency and capacity in areas including ground transport, baggage systems and check-in counters,” Ms Mather said.
“We’re jointly investing around $500 million with the NSW Government in our comprehensive ground transport solutions to improve access to, from and around the airport by streamlining traffic flow and reducing kerbside congestion.
“The first stage of T1 road network and car park improvements opened in December, easing traffic flow and offering a new, purpose-built Express Pick Up zone to make collecting passengers faster and more convenient. Work on stage two of the T1 improvements is planned to commence later this year.
“From this month, we’re implementing our approved Major Development Plan for the T2/T3 precinct to streamline traffic flow, increase ‘green light’ time, and encourage public transport and active transport, with works ongoing until 2018.
“More passengers continue to take advantage of our wide range of pre-book online parking deals, enabling them to save more than 70 per cent off standard drive up rates – with 400,000 customers using this option in 2014, an increase of 40 per cent on the previous year.”
Other new and planned initiatives at Sydney Airport since the reporting period include:
- Expansion of baggage reclaim, storage and system capacity at T1, including the opening of two new baggage carousels to accommodate A380 aircraft and the expansion of the baggage reclaim hall;
- Largest new baggage sorting area in Australia able to handle up to 32 baggage containers at one time;
- Upgrading Gate 50 to handle Code E aircraft including the B787 and A330;
- An additional 10 new self-service check-in kiosks including two service desks at T1 and eight new check-in kiosks at T2;
- Improvements to taxi facilities, including expanding holding bays and updating kerbside signage;
- Continued upgrades to Gates 8 to 10 to improve the passenger experience, including additional gate lounge seating and secondary screening capabilities for US flights;
- Improving the ambience and amenity of Pier C at T1 with new finishes, better lighting, a skylight and more seats;
- New duty free provider Heinemann to provide an extensive selection of brands and products at competitive prices at T1;
- New food and beverage outlets providing more choice and value at T1, including ‘fresh and fast’ options in response to passenger feedback; and
- A 1,200 bag early bag store to enable passengers to check in up to five hours before their flight, expected to open mid-year.
“We thank passengers for their patience as we undertake ongoing improvement works across the airport,” Ms Mather said.
“We’ll continue to listen and respond to our passengers’ feedback as we work to deliver a world-class experience at Sydney Airport.
“We also continue to consult closely with our airline partners to ensure that our investment in airport infrastructure reflects the needs of their businesses and is in line with demand.”