Visiting Emerald Airport on Saturday 5 June, I observed that Stage 1 of the alterations and additions to the Emerald Airport Terminal are now complete. Six new check-in counters, airline offices, pilot crew room and baggage conveyor system are now in operation. QantasLink are utilising three of the counters (as shown below).
Passengers are still arriving and departing from the ‘old’ terminal (pictured below). To the left of the terminal in this photo is an open fence line where photos can be had over the terminal apron, Central Airlines aircraft parking apron, and further to the runways.
Inside the ‘old’ terminal, is a glassed-off observation area that has similar views (photos below with Central Airlines PA-31s VH-FWJ, VH-NWN, VH-BCQ, plus other aircraft parked on their apron, and QantasLink Dash-8-Q400 VH-QOT parked and preparing for departure to Brisbane).
Stage 2 works will include construction of a new departure lounge, Qantas Club lounge and additional toilet facilities and are anticipated to be completed and in use during August. Stage 3 works will commence in August and include extensions within the ‘old’ terminal to the existing kiosk and rental car kiosk areas, expansion of the arrivals lounge and installation of a baggage collection carousel.
The cost of this project is approx $7,700,000 with $2,000,000 funding being provided by the Queensland State Government under the Rural Living Infrastructure Program.
Also, last year the public car park, located directly in front of the terminal building, was significantly expanded and became a pay car park. There is no charge for the first 1 hour use of the public car park and there are two automatic payment machines located on site.
The Central Highlands Regional Council owns and operates the Emerald Airport which is located approx 6km south of the Emerald along the Gregory Highway (Springsure Road).
Regular QantasLink RPT services fly in and out of Emerald with 27 services per week. Virgin Blue have been long rumoured to be starting flights in and out of Emerald, but the lack of baggage and passenger screening, as well as a runway that is too narrow, are currently preventing scheduled services from starting.