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Toowoomba City Aerodrome’s Future Hangs in the Balance

Toowoomba City Aerodrome's Future Hangs in the Balance
Image courtesy of wikipedia

Community Pleads for Lifeline

Toowoomba’s original airport, Toowoomba City Aerodrome (TWB), faces an uncertain future as financial pressures mount. A review by the Toowoomba Regional Council, expected to conclude next month, will determine the aerodrome’s fate.

This potential closure comes as TWB has been overshadowed by Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport (WTB) since 2015, which now handles regular passenger flights.

Vital Hub at Risk

TWB remains a crucial asset for the region, serving flying schools, community groups like the Darling Downs Aero Club, and vital aeromedical services such as LifeFlight and the RFDS.

The local community has rallied to save the aerodrome, with the Toowoomba City Community Airport group launching a petition that has garnered around 2,200 signatures. Their plea underscores the aerodrome’s importance in delivering emergency responses, driving economic growth, and providing educational opportunities.

Economic and Strategic Importance

The council’s financial review follows reports that the aerodrome’s revenue from leases and landing fees fails to cover operational costs.

Toowoomba Region Mayor Cr Geoff McDonald emphasised that this review, aligned with the National Competition Policy, is essential for budget and financial reporting.

He noted that the council is not seeking new leases or confirming renewals until the review is complete, with current leases extended on a monthly basis.

Possible Alternatives

Meanwhile, Kellie Banditt, general manager of Toowoomba Wellcamp Airport, has expressed readiness to accommodate TWB’s tenants if the closure proceeds.

She highlighted Wellcamp’s state-of-the-art facilities and its capacity to handle increased traffic, although she acknowledged that the final decision rests with the council.

The outcome of this review could significantly impact Toowoomba, with the aerodrome’s potential closure threatening not just local aviation activities but also the broader community’s connectivity and growth.