Tamworth Regional Council yesterday announced that free parking at the airport would end from late October, with travellers set to pay up to $60 a week .
From Monday, October 24, Tamworth airport users will be required to pay for parking.
As part of plans to ease users into the system the new boom gates will be in operation form October 10 but no fees will be charged for a fortnight.
In a mixed week for the Tamworth Regional Airport, council also announced the addition of a fourth airline to the terminal, Fly Corporate, which it is hoped will boost competition between airlines for local travellers.
Fly Corporate’s new weekday service between Brisbane and Tamworth will start the end of October and came after Virgin scaled back its overnight flights to Sydney earlier this week.
TRC’s airport and aviation development manager, Julie Stewart, said the paid-parking scheme would address ongoing issues with carpark usage.
“People are finding it difficult to find carparks near the airport, they’re finding they have to park in the long term area when there’s vehicles parked for long periods of time in front of the terminal,” Ms Stewart said.
Ms Stewart does not anticipate the fees will turn travellers off flying from Tamworth.
“I think people will actually use this in their planning in coming to the airport,” she said. “Much the same as they do when they’re travelling to other airports that have paid parking.”
The new structure, which was approved by council in May, will allow for two-hours of free parking in the short-term area, with $2 an hour charged for each additional hour with a maximum $10 fee for 24 hours in the short-term area and $8 a day in the long-term area.
“In the short-term it will be $60 a week, whereas, in the long-term we’re looking at $35 a week,” Ms Stewart said.
Ms Stewart also confirmed there were ongoing talks with an airline that was interested in lining up a route between Tamworth and Melbourne. “We are in talks with at least one airline in relation to that. Those talks are progressing, but we haven’t got any firm commitment from that airline yet.”
- Fly corporate lands, Page 2
- Editorial, Page 17