Mareeba Airport's $10 million Stage 2 upgrade was officially opened for service last week.
Funded from the Federal Government's Building Better Regions fund, the upgrade added 350 m to the runway, strengthened some sections of tarmac, built 1100 m of new taxiways and installed airfield lighting.
North Queensland-based LNP Senator, Susan McDonald, said the upgrade would vastly improve freight and passenger services.
“Mareeba Airport will be used by maintenance crews, trainee pilots, the North Queensland Aero Club, FIFO mine workers, agricultural freight movers, air show pilots, and general aviation,” she said.
“It will also be used by the Royal Flying Doctor Service, which is important because in North Queensland, aviation is critical to keeping people safe and for moving them quickly to medical help.
“This upgrade also puts Mareeba in prime position to take advantage of growing international demand for pilot training, and will allow for improved disaster management responsiveness.
“There will also be greater demand for skilled aircraft maintenance engineers.”
Along with Stage 1, which included the construction of a 52-lot commercial precinct, the Australian Government has contributed a total of $10 million to the $23 million Mareeba Airport upgrade.
The intent of the upgrade scheme is to enable Mareeba to be an alternative to Cairns Airport.