HOPES to increase domestic flights and welcome international travellers to Newcastle Airport in the near future were shared at last Friday's official opening of the $14.5 million terminal expansion project.
About 50 people, including past and present people involved with the project, watched Scot MacDonald MLC, Parliamentary Secretary for the Hunter, officially open the terminal.
"The $14.5 million project, which includes an $11.1 million grant from the NSW Government's Hunter Infrastructure and Investment Fund, means Newcastle Airport has increased terminal capacity for additional domestic services, an increased food and beverage offering for its passengers, and facilities to allow for international flights," Mr MacDonald said.
"The expansion also opens the possibility for new domestic routes such as Adelaide, Perth, and Cairns, as well as international services to New Zealand as demand continues to grow."
The completed works include: the extension of the terminal building by 50 per cent, a new departure lounge and arrivals hall, dedicated space for customs, immigration, and quarantine and six new food and beverage outlets.
In official speeches Mr MacDonald, Peter Blackmore, chairman of HIIF, and Peter Gesling, Newcastle Airport's chairman of the board, reflected on how far the airport had come in the past three years.
Airport chief executive Peter Cock said the expansion was done with the future in mind.
"We've built a terminal that will allow us to grow," he said.
"Our passengers are informing us they want increased services and new destinations.
"We're actively engaging with airlines and are confident that the airlines will increase services in response to this demand."