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NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment
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Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act 

Warnervale Airport is owned and operated by Central Coast Council. The Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act 1996 (the Act) was introduced as a private members’ bill responding to community concern about the former Wyong Shire Council’s plans to expand Warnervale Airport. The Act prevented Council from expanding the airport without additional assessment and approval from the then Minister for Planning.

 

In 2017, the Department of Planning completed a review of the Act that recommended the Act be retained. However, since this review, an extension to the runway by Central Coast Council triggered flight movement restrictions in the Act that reportedly affect the viability of the airport.

 

In response to continued community concern regarding the airport’s operations, an independent review was initiated in late 2019 by the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces, in partnership with Central Coast Council, to determine whether the Act remained valid and necessary. 

 

2020 Independent Review of the Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act

 

The Review was conducted by Abigail Goldberg and Peter Fiegehen from January to March 2020. Ms Goldberg is an expert in infrastructure, urban planning, governance and executive management. Mr Fiegehen is a pilot and aviation specialist.

 

View the Review’s Terms of Reference.

 

The Review included background research, verification and validation, an invitation for the public to make submissions, a public meeting at which verbal submissions were received and a written Report with recommendations. 

 

The Review received 939 unique stakeholder and community inputs. Of the submissions received as part of the Review, 75 per cent supported the Act being repealed. 

 

See the submissions for the Review of Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act 1996.

 

Read the Review of the Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act 1996

 

Review recommendations

 

The Review Report contains three recommendations:

 

  1. The Act should be repealed as soon as possible, but if there was a delay, the airport flight restrictions should be removed immediately;
  2. Central Coast Council, who owns and operates the airport, should adopt a clear framework to govern the airport’s future management; and 
  3. Address safety issues affecting the runway.

Government’s position on the Review recommendations

 

The NSW Government accepts all of the recommendations of the Review Report.

 

The Government will continue to work with Council, recognising that implementation requires action from both the State and Council to ensure continued community access and use of the airport.

 

The Government will prepare draft legislation to implement a staged repeal of the Act:

 

  1. First, to repeal the daily take-off and landing cap in section 6 of the Act immediately, and
  2. Secondly, to repeal the remainder of the Act on a later date to be set by proclamation. 

 

The repealing of the remainder of the Act will progress at a later date in consultation with Council.

 

View the Government response to the Warnervale Airport (Restrictions) Act Review.

 

Read the media release: Warnervale Airport flight cap to be repealed