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-   -   Bankstown Airport – Desperately Sad (https://www.pprune.org/pacific-general-aviation-questions/548893-bankstown-airport-desperately-sad.html)

Dick Smith 7th Oct 2014 05:57

Bankstown Airport – Desperately Sad
I went for a walk around Bankstown Airport this morning. What a disaster! Hangars that once had thriving businesses in them ten years ago are now closed and when I peered through the gaps in the doors I could see they were being used for storage of what looked like rubbish. The whole airport reminded me of the Soviet Union when I visited there in 1966 – part of a system that had failed!

Bankstown is the major secondary airport for the largest city in Australia – but you wouldn’t know it.

Can anyone give me the current movements at Bankstown? I understood they were over 350,000 at the peak and I’d love to know what the figures are now.

And before you all start blaming me for “User Pays” – no, that was Henry Bosch in his report before I was involved. However, I was involved in getting costs down, e.g. by removing the rescue and fire-fighting from all the secondary airports. That has probably saved over $100 million in the twenty years since then at the major secondary airports and there has not been one fatality attributed to the removal.

If you ever want me to do some more cost savings, just ask.

Cxmeron 7th Oct 2014 06:27

The figures certainly aren't great now compared to a few years back...

2014 January to July: YSBK - 137,952 - keep in mind that this is only a half year figure. The 2013 January to July figure was 127,870 so this year is a slight improvement so far.

2013 Calendar Year: YSBK - 215,802

2012 Calendar Year: YSBK - 236,030

2011 Calendar Year: YSBK - 243,126

Other info and sources can be found here:
Movements at Australian airports | Airservices

Creampuff 7th Oct 2014 06:38

And where did the $100 million “saved” go, Dick?

The problem is that the money “saved” doesn’t make anything less expensive for the aviation industry. It just gets p*ssed up against the wall by governments, and the costs imposed on the aviation industry still go up.

Not blaming you for that outcome.

Just sayin’ that “saving” more money doesn’t help the aviation industry.

Governments don’t budget and spend money like a business. Governments budget and spend money to protect their political interests. If the aviation industry doesn’t want an ARFF at Secondary Airports and that saves governments $100 million, governments are happy to spend that on pink batts and Seasprite Helicopters.

Dick Smith 7th Oct 2014 06:48

The RFFS was about to become a separate charge for landing at the GA airports.

When I removed the service there was no separate charge- so at least I saved an increase in this particular case!

thorn bird 7th Oct 2014 06:51

It is very sad Dick.

But when our airports were farmed out to property developers and loan shark banks to be expected.

With a rapacious regulator and what seems a government powerless to contain or control their excesses It looks like GA is finished in Australia.

People are just giving up, its all getting too hard.

Average age of engineers now in the fifties, very few young people prepared to invest their time and dollars into taking apprenticeship even if they could find someone to take them on, only people with your resources will be able to afford to fly.

I would love to be in a position to toss it in, get away from CAsA's incompetence and bully boys.

There's always Kiwiland every now and then for a flying fix. Beautiful scenery, great rule set and no CAsA, over there you can enjoy your flying and I would recommend anyone thinking of learning to fly to head there, you will enjoy the experience and save yourself a lot of money, and its safer to.

Squawk7700 7th Oct 2014 07:15

I've heard that before thorn bird, however what do property developers have to do with the demise of Bankstown?
Horton park, yes. Wallan, yes. Geelong, yes.

It is sad when they are involve when airports are the target. Last week in Sunbury on the news a family of 10 siblings had bought a property 20 years ago for $300,000 sold it to developers for over $70 million for a new suburb to be built.

The worst part is family farms that have to be sold and you can't hold onto them. Once the council decides to re-zone from rural to residential, they charge the land owners full rates based on the potential value of the property. Owners can't help but sell. This is how owners are "forced" to sell.

Marvin Martian 7th Oct 2014 07:40

Almost the same at YMMB.
Years ago it was a vibrant energetic place with so much activity.
RVAC is holding a dinner on 25th of this month to celebrate its 100th anniversary. Not sure how many years left though.
Membership numbers have plummeted from the heady days.
No touring aircraft online. Just about all the aircraft are 70s vintage.
Driving past recently saw the adjacent golf course has been removed.
Was in the tower years ago supervising night circuits when someone called up to say they had suffered EFATO and landed on a fairway.
No injuries/damage. Won't be able to do that when the new factories are there. Sad really..

SOPS 7th Oct 2014 07:53

Unfortunately many years ago GA ceased to be regarded as an important part of infrastructure in this country. And the regulator decided it was better to work against the industry than with it.

What we see today, is the result. And I don't think anyone is going to wake up, until is too late and everything is gone.

Very sad, but that is Australia in 2014, if it can't be dug out of the ground, it's not worth worrying about.

DUXNUTZ 7th Oct 2014 08:00


The cost of aviation (in ths country particularly) is absolutely insane. I'd love to hire an airplane out at BK and go for a fly - take the Mrs down Victor 1, but its simply too cost prohibitive. I'm sure that the training operators on the field are struggling.

I wonder what the end-game is? Will the State govt allow YSBK to shut up shop?

Ultralights 7th Oct 2014 08:00

I've heard that before thorn bird, however what do property developers have to do with the demise of Bankstown?
Horton park, yes. Wallan, yes. Geelong, yes.
have a look in a few more hangars at bankstown..... some contain carpet recyclers, one is a nursery, one sells office chairs, another is the base of a cleaning company... and thats just on one road....

thorn bird 7th Oct 2014 08:16

the scary thing is all of those mentioned have airside access.
With no security free to wander where they may.
Don't know how many aircraft parked up that hold enough jet A or avgas to make a fairly large bonfire down George street at lunchtime, about six minutes flight time away.
No such thing as public infrastructure anymore, how long before we start renting parliament house from MC Bank or the Chinese government.

Fris B. Fairing 7th Oct 2014 08:23

This is symptomatic of modern governments which have lost sight of the concept of essential services. Things like electricity, water - and airports, are now luxury items.

thunderbird five 7th Oct 2014 08:35


2013-2014 219,770
2012-2013 220,294
2011-2012 240,142
2010-2011 257,434

more available from the publications port of DCA/CAA/ASA/whatever the hell it's called this week.....:(

when do I get that jar of Ozzie nuts:eek:

KRviator 7th Oct 2014 08:51

Not exclusive to Bankstown, Dick...And here's why:

I worked the cost to do an hour of circuits at Warnervale in my RV-9 with their new costings, earlier this year. Over $600 an hour!, based on 10 circuits/hour - for an aeroplane that I own...!

Despite a submission to Council about this, the most they're willing to compromise is a daily "training" rate, for ab-initio ("training") circuits, but for you or me, we pay for every landing.

It's cheaper to fly from Warnervale to Archerfield, refuel and fly an hour of circuits there and return home than it is to do an hour at my local airstrip.

WTF? :rolleyes:

Dick Smith 7th Oct 2014 08:52

And was it once 350,000?

SOPS 7th Oct 2014 09:33

600 dollars an hour..for circuits.WTF??? What are these blood suckers going to do when there is no one left that can pay these extortionate rates?

Draggertail 7th Oct 2014 09:58

Warnervale airport fees.

"For Australia Skydive landing fees and other charges for parking and refuelling went from $1795 a year to $535,000 a year."

No Cookies | dailytelegraph.com.au

Andy_RR 7th Oct 2014 10:14

This problem is not just confined to GA. The whole country is being de-industrialized on a major scale with capabilities being exported wholesale or left to wither.

We are watching high-end precision machinery being exported at 10c in the dollar. Never mind the "advanced manufacturing" that is going to save us. Most of the skills and machinery required for that will be gone before the nation wakes up.

We will be competing for foreign aid in the future to make up for the lack of FDI because it's only our positive capital account that has allowed us our currently high, but declining standard of living.

Take a look at what the "mining boom" has done to our balance of trade and current account. It's barely a blip in a long and sorry trend into the abyss.

Is it any wonder the nation can't sustain expensive aviation infrastructure?

Kharon 7th Oct 2014 10:17

Nice one Dick ..:ok: – the Daily Mail and US Financial press articles only add value to the cause and (as a bonus) disgrace – once again, 'The Australian' – as a CASA propaganda rag.

Never, ever quit – using your own time and money to help those to whom, the word 'experience' means little, or are capable of believing in a lesson learnt. There are not many to whom I would "dip my lid". However, good Sir; consider it 'dipped'.

Toot' a toot, toot – Dick special salute from the 'Houseboat' crew. (Ignore the farting elephant – it's a long, long story).

KRviator 7th Oct 2014 10:25

Originally Posted by SOPS (Post 8687012)
600 dollars an hour..for circuits.WTF??? What are these blood suckers going to do when there is no one left that can pay these extortionate rates?

Yep, no bull.

$110 just for the privelige of refuelling on council land. Not counting the fuel purchased. That's extra. And this is per refuel - even if you BYO Mogas!
$15/tonne (or part thereof) per landing for regular users. $27.50 for itinerant users.
$1,650 parking fees per year.
$605 "usage fee" per year.

Originally Posted by Wyong GM Greg Mcdonald
The user pay model was selected by council as the most equitable fee structure with costs borne by the users rather than Wyong Shire ratepayers, with the fee structure benchmarked against other regional airfields prior to adoption.

But when I suggested Wyong Council would not dare to introduce a "User Pays" fee structure at their 25 boat ramps, there was deafening silence. Yet as a (now former) Wyong Councli ratepayer, I don't own a boat yet have to pay for the maintenance of the boat ramps.

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