• Steve Creedy
  • From: The Australian
  • May 27, 2011

ALICE Springs is set to host the first dedicated aircraft storage facility outside the US after an agreement between Northern Territory Airports and Australian-based company Asia Pacific Aircraft Storage.

APAS is hoping to capitalise on high growth and aircraft turnover in the Asia-Pacific to build an aircraft storage and recycling facility in Alice Springs similar to the famous aircraft graveyard in Arizona.

The deal to sub-lease about 110ha of land opposite the main terminal at Alice Springs Airport was finalised this week and the company expects to have the first phase of the facility up running later this year.

The facility will offer short-term parking or longer-term storage to airlines and aircraft leasing companies, as well as decommissioning and recycling of planes at the end of their working life.

APAS is looking at taking Boeing 737 type jets upwards and is hoping to capitalise on the turnover being created by the introduction of the new generation of fuel-efficient aircraft.

Other potential customers are airlines and leasing companies wanting to shed capacity during downturns or looking for somewhere to house aircraft between leases.

The company selected Alice Springs because of its arid climate, suited to aircraft storage and preservation, the availability of existing infrastructure and capacity for major expansion.

APAS is working with consultants GHD on the design, engineering and construction of the facility and the first stage will include 12ha of hardstand capable of accommodating up to 300 aircraft, a taxiway and a refuelling pad.

APAS managing director Tom Vincent said the project represented the first Asia-Pacific, cost-effective alternative for operators in the region who had historically ferried aircraft to the US.

Mr Vincent said the facility would employ crew to move aircraft and the company was talking to third-party maintenance providers about preservation checks.

Source: The Australian (http://www.theaustralian.com.au/business/aviation/alice-springs-to-host-plane-retirement-centre/story-e6frg95x-1226063629159)Accessed: 14 Apr 2015, 11:18am