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Jason Connelly and Douglas Sward of Orbost Airport receive 2023 National Small Regional Aerodrome award for 2023

East Gippsland Orbost Airport, overseen by the council, won the National Small Regional Aerodrome title twice at AAA's 2023 Industry Awards, showcasing excellence in safety, innovation, and community dedication.

By news@gippsland - 28th November 2023 - Back to News

The Orbost Airport, managed by East Gippsland Shire Council, has secured the National Small Regional (non-RPT) Aerodrome of the Year title for the second time in recent years at the Australian Airports Association (AAA) National Industry Awards 2023 in Melbourne. This remarkable feat marks three consecutive years that East Gippsland Shire Council-managed aerodromes have proudly claimed a prestigious national industry award.

Proud moment as Jason Connelly (left) and Douglas Sward (right) receive the award for Small Regional(non-RPT) Aerodrome of the Year from National Chair at Australian Airports Association, Kym Meys

Proud moment as Jason Connelly (left) and Douglas Sward (right) receive the award for Small Regional(non-RPT) Aerodrome of the Year from National Chair at Australian Airports Association, Kym Meys

Airport excellence acknowledged

Mayor Cr Tom Crook said council was elated and immensely proud of Orbost Airport's continued success at the AAA National Industry Awards. "This achievement underscores our commitment to maintaining the highest standards of safety, innovation and functionality in the aviation sector," Cr Crook said.

Orbost Airport's success is attributed to its outstanding efforts in various areas, with a particular focus on vegetation management. Council's dedication to safety is evident in the successful removal of significant penetrations of the Obstacle Limitation Surface (OLS), ensuring uncompromised aircraft safety.

"The commitment to vegetation management, upgrading security and wildlife-proof fencing, and landside improvements demonstrates our unwavering dedication to providing a safe and efficient environment for all stakeholders," Cr Crook said.

Airport safety enhancements

The upgraded security measures, including wildlife-proof fencing along the entire airside boundary, enhance safety and security for all airport users. Landside improvements provide tenants with year-round weather access entry tracks, showcasing Orbost Airport's commitment to excellence in both functionality and aesthetics.

"Orbost Airport plays a vital role in our community, accommodating small recreational general aviation medical services such as Air Ambulance Victoria and Angel Flight, and serving as an airbase during emergency aerial firefighting activities, especially during prone summer bushfire seasons," Cr Crook said.

Award winners

Australian Airports Association (AAA) National Industry Awards 2023 full list of winners, and they are as follows:

  • Airport Excellence Award: DEI Leadership Award | Melbourne Airport and Brisbane Airport: Flying high on International Women's Day
  • Airport Excellence Award: Operations Award | Sydney Airport: Security Operations Real-Time Dashboard
  • Airport Excellence Award: Infrastructure Award | Brisbane Airport: International Apron Rectification Project
  • Airport Excellence Award: Sustainability Award | Cairns Airport: Cairns Airport SLL - A ground-breaking Agreement to Support Threatened Species
  • Airport Excellence Award: Commercial Award | Brisbane Airport: Brisbane's Best Bites
  • Airport Excellence Award: Innovation Award | Sydney Airport: Tripsim by SYD, an innovative digital product launched by Sydney Airport
  • Small Regional Airport/Aerodrome | Fulton Hogan and Jacobs: Cessnock Airport Upgrade Project
  • Large Regional Airport | ASI Solutions (UK): Sustainably extending the life of Mackay Airport RWY14/32
  • Major, Metro and Capital City Airport | To70 Aviation: Western Sydney International Airport - Interactive Flight Path and Aircraft Noise Impact Tool
  • Emerging Airport Leader Award | Hayley Vale - Port Hedland International Airport
  • Appreciation Award | Greg Fordham - Managing Director, Airbiz
  • Small Regional (non-RPT) Aerodrome of the Year | Orbost Airport: Vegetation Management, Airport Safety & Security
  • Small Regional (RPT) Airport of the Year | Gove Airport: Terminal Revitalisation 2022/23
  • Large Regional Airport of the Year | Port Hedland International Airport: Port Hedland International Airport
  • Major Airport of the Year | Cairns Airport: Growing Sustainably for Our Community
  • Metro Airport of the Year | Bankstown Airport: Bankstown Airport
  • Capital City of the Year | Brisbane Airport: Sustainability Leadership

With an estimated annual aircraft movement of 1000-1500 flights, Orbost Airport continues to be a cornerstone of East Gippsland's aviation landscape and plays a strategically important role in times of fire emergency and to connect locals with health services in metropolitan Melbourne.

Pictures from East Gippsland Shire Council website.


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