Auckland Airport wants second, bigger runway

Auckland Airport.
Auckland Airport. Photo credit: Getty

Auckland Airport has revealed plans for its proposed second runway, which will be longer and located further north than previously planned.

The airport got consent for a second strip in 2002, but with passenger numbers now expected to double between now and 2044, it says it needs more space.

"To cater for the predicted growth in passenger numbers and the aircraft that will be needed to cater for the growth, we now need the runway to be 72 metres further north than what was consented in 2002," Auckland Airport said in a statement.

"We also need to extend the length from 2150 metres to 2983 metres to support planes such as A380, B777 and B787."

Auckland Airport expansion
What areas may be affected by the airport's proposed extension. Photo credit: Auckland Airport

But a second runway and bigger planes means more noise. The airport has released an interactive map showing how local residents will be affected - the solid pink area being the loudest - in excess of 65db - the yellow area can expect noise up to 65db, and blue up to 60db.

Affected residents will be offered a 'noise mitigation package' by the airport, so they can purchase insulation and heat pumps, allowing them to keep their windows shut in summer.

The current runway will reach capacity around 2028, which is when the new one is hoped to open.

Two applications have been lodged with Auckland Council - one to extend the new runway's length, and the other to increase the area affected by building height restrictions.

Buildings that fit Unitary Plan requirements won't be affected, but "extremely tall" structures may be affected, NZME reports.

Buildings within the yellow ring will be limited to 15m in height, with that restriction easing the further away you get from the airport. 

The changes will need to go through a new round of consent hearings before approval, which could be appealed to the Environment Court.

Submissions are due by mid-March.