ORANGE Airport’s terminal is set for completion by August, but it will have some spare space when it opens.
Central Western Daily staff were the first to inspect the 75 per cent completed facility earlier in the week, which has yet to be fitted out.
The reception and baggage drop with a conveyor system will be located on the western side of the public access area, with passenger lounges, two departure gates and an arrival gate occupying most of the expansive room.
A baggage carousel and hire car outlets will be located on the terminal’s eastern side, with amenities and a cafe along its southern wall.
To the north of the new building, the existing tarmac will be doubled in size.
Off limits to the public will be a meeting room, a staff room with kitchen facilities, a council office and baggage handling.
It will also feature two airline offices, planned for Rex and Brindabella prior to Brindabella entering administration last year.
Commercial and emergency services manager Kel Gardiner said the office would remain empty because the space could not be redesigned.
However, Airport Advisory Committee chair and deputy mayor Chris Gryllis said the $19 million for terminal and runway upgrades was still worth the outlay.
“The old terminal was constructed 50 years ago - it’s had a few facelifts in that time and it was beyond any adjustment,” he said.
“When Newcrest does fly in and fly out with jet aircraft, they have to fly at half capacity because of the length of the runway.”
Cr Gryllis also said council was working on plans to expand the industrial area for flight-related industries.
“You can’t possibly run a viable airport only on passenger contributions - you’ve got to have other businesses, but we have to do it step by step,” he said.
The terminal’s interior will be finished by August, however the exterior will depend on the weather.
Works manager Wayne Gailey said a certain minimum temperature was required to lay the road pavement for the drop-off point and council would wait for the right conditions rather than fixing cracks later.