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'Seamless, safe and reliable': Innovative airfield design to reduce delays

Western Sydney Airport chief executive Simon Hickey said their airfield's cutting-edge technology and innovative design will mean one thing: "We'll safely get planes in the air or to the gates faster."

Construction of the 3.7-kilometre runway and rapid-exit taxiways at Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport will begin in 2022. It follows the contract to design and build the airfield at Sydney's new airport being awarded to the CPB Contractors and ACCIONA joint venture.

Airfield construction is expected to create around 1200 direct jobs and support additional indirect jobs.

Some of the features of airfield include:

  • WSI will be the only airport in Sydney equipped with a modern CAT III-B instrument landing system allowing them to operate safely in foggy conditions.
  • WSI's runway will handle the full range of commercial aircraft, including the new generation of ultra-long-haul airliners like the A350-1000 and Boeing 777X.
  • The airfield will be future-ready, designed for expansion with consideration for emerging technologies such as electric aircraft.
  • Lighting will be LED with recycled content used where appropriate for construction.
  • Sustainability will remain a key focus on the airfield as well as in the terminal, with the efficient design reducing fuel burn and emissions.
  • Crushed sandstone from tunnelling projects across Sydney will be reused as a high-strength foundation to support construction of the runway, taxiways and roads.
  • Airfield construction will include more than 40 kilometres of roads and the installation of 3000 aeronautical ground lights. It also includes 90 kilometres of power and fibre optic cabling to electrify the airport.

Mr Hickey said the airfield design will reduce taxi times, preventing delays on the tarmac that can be frustrating for passengers and costly for airlines.

"At Western Sydney International, we'll get passengers on their way sooner, whether that's getting to your meeting on time or arriving home to loved ones," Mr Hickey said.

Construction at Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton).

Construction at Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton).

"Passengers and airlines will love using Western Sydney International because the experience we deliver will be seamless, safe and reliable from start to finish."

Western Sydney International is on track to open to international, domestic and air cargo services in late 2026.