Eviction notices have been sent to several Moorabbin Airport operators in order for the land to be made available for commercial development.
Operators at the western end of the Northern apron–several who have freehold buildings on leased land–have been told they will have to be out by 31 December, and at the time of writing have not been offered suitable alternative premises on the airport.
The area targeted for commercial development covers the grass aircraft park on Grange Road through to the western edge of Tristar Aviation and south to Second Avenue. The plans also call for Kingston Central Boulevard to be extended across the current apron heading southward.
Companies believed to have been given notice to vacate include:
- Vortex Aviation
- Blue Demon Aviation
- Simpson Aeroelectrics
- Boutique Helicopters
- Ian Baillie Aircraft Sales
Long-established companies such as Simpson Aeroelectrics, Vortex Aviation and Blue Demon Aviation have been told they have until the end of the year to get out. It is also thought that Soar Aviation's Third Street building and grounds will also have to go.
Some of the tenants have been in their premises for many years. Blue Demon Aviation has been on the airport for 46 years and employs a staff of 12 including eight engineers. Australian Flying understands that they have not been offered any suitable alternative buildings to relocate to.
Some business owners have expressed frustration with an apparent reluctance by Moorabbin Airport Corporation (MAC) to engage on the issues and have described MAC's attitude as unhelpful.
MAC is owned by the giant Goodman logistics and property development conglomerate.
A tentative plan to allow hangar development in the triangle of land between the Bravo taxiway and runway 17L/35R for companies to relocate to is thought to be impractical because it could generate wind shear on final approach, leaving the evicted companies with very few options for staying on the airport.
The development is an expansion of the Precinct 4 commercial zone, which includes the Direct Factory Outlet (DFO) on Centre Dandenong Road, which was flagged in the 2015 Moorabbin Airport Master Plan. The master plan states "The primary purpose of Precinct 4 is to provide buildings and infrastructure for commercial activities, including retail, industrial and showroom land uses and flight student accommodation."
Attempts to contact MAC for comment have not been successful.