New lighting upgrades at Goondiwindi aerodrome will improve the accessibility of the site for night-time flights.
Goondiwindi Regional Council has replaced and installed 60 new lights along the aerodrome’s primary runway, along with a new illuminated windsock to indicate wind direction for night-time instrument approaches to the site.
Council secured $215,000 from the Australian Government’s Local Roads and Community Infrastructure (LRCI) Program Grant towards the project and has also contributed a further $25,000 towards the upgrades.
Councillor Jason Watts holds Council’s portfolio for transport, roads and youth, and said the work would improve the operating conditions for pilots taking off and landing during the night or in limited visibility.
He said the new upgrades will be of particular benefit to the Royal Flying Doctor Service (RFDS).
“We prioritised this project to ensure we could bring the Goondiwindi runway up to meet current expected standards,” Cr Watts said.
“The aerodrome is an important piece of community infrastructure and this was an excellent opportunity to invest using external funds.
“In particular, we want to ensure this facility is up to standard to allow organisations like the RFDS to access our town as they need to. They provide an essential, often life-saving service to rural residents in communities such as ours here in the Goondiwindi Region, so we need to do everything we can to make sure they can get here as swiftly and easily as possible – whatever time, day or night.”
The Goondiwindi aerodrome is owned by Council and covers an area of about 160 hectare. The facility includes the 1,340-metre primary bitumen paved runway and a shorter, secondary grass runway. There is a taxiway leading to the terminal and apron facilities, which include five hangars and short-term itinerant aircraft parking in front of the terminal building.
The Goondiwindi aerodrome project complements several other upgrades funded through the LRCI program over the past year, including a series of refurbishments at the Texas Heritage Centre and Tobacco Museum, the construction of the new Flemming Street footpath in Texas, re-painting the exterior of the Inglewood Sports Complex, and extensive refurbishment works at Cement Mills hall.
“By successfully funding these essential community infrastructure projects externally, we can maximise the ratepayer dollar for other projects while keeping costs minimal,” Cr Watts said.