SATURDAY will mark the end of an era at the Orange Airport when the terminal built in 1976 closes its doors to passengers for the last time.
Passengers catching the 9:45am flight to Sydney on Saturday morning will be the last to use the terminal before Orange City Council staff start moving furniture and equipment to the Max Hazelton Aero Centre in time for passengers arriving for the 7:10pm flight.
The Aero Centre will operate as a temporary terminal for about 12 months while the new terminal is built.
Orange mayor John Davis said the terminal was ultra-modern when it was built in 1976, but the entire airport would now be brought up to new standards.
“It’s not only the terminal it’s also the airport runway and facilities in the area,” he said.
“It’s absolutely fantastic to see improvement with the Max Hazelton Aero Club and other hangars in the area... in the next five years I can see there’s going to be a huge expansion.”
The demolition of the old terminal is expected to start by mid-October and the area will fenced off with passengers redirected to the nearby Aero Centre.
“The best thing is it’s going to be seamless,” Cr Davis said.
“We ask for patience while the new terminal is being built.”
The council chose to relocate the terminal on a Saturday because of the small number of scheduled flights.
The Aero Centre was jointly funded by the Orange Aero Club, Orange City Council and state government.
Using it as a temporary terminal will allow the council to avoid having to rent a demountable building.
The new aeromedical retrieval facility will also continue to operate from the building.
The existing terminal was last renovated in 1996.