Official Opening of the Upgraded Terminal at Quilpie Airport, Quilpie Shire
Mayor, distinguished guests, all, it is a very great pleasure for Kaye and me to join you in Quilpie today for this important event.
The affectionate term ‘big country’ has been used to describe many places around the world, and it most certainly applies to this part of Queensland.
The ‘big’ in Big Country may even be an understatement in this part of our State. Quilpie Shire is only slightly smaller than Ireland, and larger than the whole of Sri Lanka. And Brisbane is all of 900 kilometres away by air.
The tyranny of distance still exists, and it makes transport infrastructure of crucial importance in this part of Queensland.
This airport is vital to the economy of the Quilpie and Quilpie Shire, to the ability of services such as the Flying Doctor to reach local residents, and to the ability of local residents to access services further east, including education for their children and specialist medical treatment.
The upgrade brings the terminal up to CASA standards. It presents visitors, local residents, air crews, aeromedical services and other airport users with a larger, far more welcoming hub for arrivals and departures. And a more comfortable hub, as it has been known to get a trifle warm here in summer, and a trifle cool in winter.
It certainly provides a higher level of comfort than the aviator Amy Johnson could ever have hoped for when she landed in Quilpie in 1930, on her way to the UK!
Along with the upgrades at Thargomindah Airport, which I had the pleasure of officially opening yesterday, the upgrade represents a major development and an important boost for Quilpie and Bulloo shires, and the South West in general.
The upgraded terminal is a marvellous asset for the people of the region, and I thank and congratulate all those involved in the project – from the State Government and the Shire Council for providing the financing, ahead of schedule, to the designers and builders who turned the plan into reality.
On that aptly positive note, as Governor of Queensland, it is with the greatest of pleasure that I now declare the Quilpie Airport Upgrade officially open, and unveil the plaque commemorating today’s event.