SUPPORT: Lismore mayor Jenny Dowell is proud of the Aero Club which attracts a large number of planes every year.
SUPPORT: Lismore mayor Jenny Dowell is proud of the Aero Club which attracts a large number of planes every year. Marc Stapelberg

Lismore aims to become hub for revitalised aviation industry

LISMORE is set to become an aviation hub with the council taking steps to grow the industry in the region through airport land releases, re-branding and promotion.

Lismore City Council commercial services co-ordinator Kevin Trustum said council was planning to release blocks of land around the airport to cater for aviation businesses.

"In council's longer term we're looking at raising the profile of the facility, opening more blocks of land so we can grow opportunities here and also assist the businesses here with promotion and growing their businesses in the region," he said.

"It may not be just hangars, it may be associated businesses like fuel depots, plane maintenance, plane builders. We're hoping to grow it as a real diverse and complex (area).

"We're at a point where we've sold everything we've got, everything's full, so the next phase is lodging a development application to subdivide some more land and grow those blocks."

Mr Trustum said a key component to developing the city's aviation industry would be promoting and re-branding the airport's general aviation area.

He said the intention is for Lismore Regional Airport to focus on passenger flights while the Lismore Aviation Centre would be all about aviation businesses, tourism and training.

Lismore Mayor Jenny Dowell said the airport was well placed to become a successful aviation hub.

"I think we've got an advantage over many of the other airports because we're not being crowded out with commercial flights so there's airspace as well as land space," she said.

"Lots of people want to buy or fly or even build their own planes. They can't do that at places like Ballina or the Gold Coast, the airspace is just too busy.

"I think that there's a lot going for it (Lismore airport) and we've definitely got a council that's willing to support and be very interested in future investment here."

Cr Dowell pointed to the success of new Lismore-based helicopter company Rotorwings as a sign of the future. The company was recently contracted by the State Government to conduct shark patrols during the school holidays.



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