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Tuesday, 7 December 1976
Page: 3382

Mr KEATING (Blaxland) -The Bankstown airport is in the electorate of Blaxland and I am interested and have taken an interest in the consolidation of the Hawker de

Havilland Australia Pty Ltd plant. The history, briefly, is that the Lidcombe plant is owned by the Government and leased by Hawker de Havilland. It was an ex-wartime plant. In the interests of economies the Government has decided to merge the 2 plants at a cost of $7m. I do not cavil at that because this move will improve the competitiveness of Hawker de Havilland in the aircraft industry. Most of the material coming from Lidcombe to Bankstown is of a manufacturing or service nature. It should not add a significant amount of air traffic to the Bankstown airport.

However, on that point I am very concerned because last year air traffic movements at Bankstown numbered 302 000. It is now the busiest airport in Australia. There has been no positive plan on the part of any federal or State government, up until now, to establish another general aviation facility on the north side of Sydney. Unless there is some relief at Bankstown someone will be killed. There were S deaths 2 years ago. The air traffic must increase as it is the only inner city outlet for light aircraft traffic besides the Sydney (Kingsford-Smith) Airport. Much of its fight traffic is coming to Bankstown. The expansion of the Cessna Aircraft Company, the Piper Aircraft Australia facilities for assembly and now Hawker de Havilland is just adding to the infrastructure of industry around the airport. It has flying schools. More and more people are going there. Air safety is an urgent matter which has been forgotten by successive governments. The problem must soon be rectified.

The flight patterns at Bankstown airport pass over 6 schools. The result will be that deaths must occur with the traffic demands at this level. So, I urge the Government to look favourably at establishing a new general aviation facility on the north side of Sydney, where 45 per cent of Bankstown 's traffic comes from, in the interests of providing facilities for people in that area who fly and also in the interests of safety and of giving some relief from noise to the people of the Bankstown community. I do not oppose the consolidation of the Lidcombe plant because basically it is a manufacturing facility. But I would not like to see consolidation involving Hawker de Havilland become the vehicle by which Bankstown gets additional traffic.

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