Christchurch Airport opens new terminal building

18 April 2013

The new $237M terminal building at Christchurch Airport has been officially opened by the Prime Minister, Rt Hon John Key.

Christchurch Airport CEO Jim Boult told 300 guests they were part of a momentous day for the airport.

"New terminals at airports generally only occur every 50 years or so, so you are witness to something special," he said.

"Our old terminal opened in 1960 and was built to handle around 200,000 passengers. These days we handle that number of passengers every 13 days."

Mr Boult shared some statistics with the audience.

"During the construction of this terminal, roughly 44 million visitors have walked through the terminal and almost 300,000 commercial flights operated through here.

"Most remarkably...in spite of the 11,000 earthquakes during construction, snow storms, volcanic ash clouds and other unforeseen events, we completed this project on the budget set in 2009.

He told the guests the new terminal building is receiving very positive feedback from the travelling public, airlines, border agencies, retail partners and others and has won critical independent acclaim.

"There is a series of quarterly surveys conducted independently worldwide around major airports. It's the Airport Service Quality surveys, known in the industry as ASQ, and across the past 4 quarters, despite the fact that we were still a construction zone, Christchurch Airport has emerged as quite simply the best airport in Australasia."

Mr Boult ended his speech with some words for the people of Christchurch.

"I hope you see this as I do – a symbol of our outstanding rebuilt city to come and the first major piece of construction to be completed since February 2011. I sincerely hope it is not 50 years until the next terminal is built – it's my hope that our rebuilt city proves such a drawcard that we run out of room long before that time."