Regional Development Australia Chair calls for open and transparent discussion on airport

Regional Development Australia, Central Coast, Chair, Phil Walker

Regional Development Australia, Central Coast, (RDACC) is calling on Central Coast Council to commence open and transparent discussion with the community about the future of Central Coast Airport at Warnervale, in response to the ongoing concern of many residents and business leaders.
RDACC Chair, Phil Walker, said our community must be provided with all available information, including the release of all studies, documentation, expressions of interest, potential issues and available options, to help them make an informed decision on this substantial development opportunity.
“It’s important that the community is aware of how this development will affect them,” he said.
Walker added that, in principle, RDACC supported the intended development of a light aviation precinct on the Central Coast due to the potential benefits for the region, including local jobs, investment opportunities, precinct activation and economic benefits.
“However, at this stage, our continuing position on this matter is that more detailed independent studies, and extensive, unbiased community consultation on all options, opportunities and constraints are required,” Walker said.
“While RDACC is encouraged by recent statements regarding continued investigations into the airport development, it encourages council to engage in direct consultation with the broader community, equipping all key stakeholders with the necessary information regarding this critical issue.”
RDACC will formally write to council and the NSW government to clarify its current position on the airport’s future and formally request they initiate certain actions.
The RDACC wants council to proactively investigate the viability of developing a light aviation precinct on the Central Coast with the intent of creating local jobs, attracting investment opportunities, activating the Warnervale Employment Precinct and the potential flow-on economic benefits that this type of development could deliver to the region.
The RDACC wants to see extensive impartial community consultation on all available options, opportunities and constraints in the development of a light aviation precinct on the Central Coast.
An independent expert organisation or panel should be engaged to objectively assess all information regarding the airport’s future, says the RDACC, and make an informed decision on the best way forward for our local community, surrounding regions and NSW.
“Our region needs established, transparent consultation and formal decision making processes in place to ensure appropriate consideration is given to these large scale, complex economic activation precincts being established on the Central Coast,” Walker said.
“As Central Coast residents and business leaders, we deserve better outcomes for our region.
“We all need to work together to address the economic and social challenges that we continue to face.
“This will require strong bipartisan leadership, unprecedented collaboration and effective negotiation to deliver what is required for the Coast,” Walker said.
RDACC is part of a national network of committees dedicated to growing strong and economically viable regional communities by developing regional growth plans and strategies that support economic development, create new jobs, encourage skills development and attract business investment.

Media release, Aug 22
Chair, Phil Walker
Regional Development Australia Central Coast

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