Hawke's Bay Airport's existing air traffic control service will be kept after an independent aeronautical study determined that it was needed.
In May last year, Airways New Zealand launched a review of the air traffic services it provided at seven regional airports with reducing traffic volumes, which included Hawke's Bay Airport.
The purpose of the review was to confirm that the right level of air traffic control was provided at the airports and that appropriate agreements were in place for funding these services.
The first step in the process was for involved airports to undertake aeronautical studies to examine their individual airspace environments.
In a statement released on Wednesday, Airways NZ and Hawke's Bay Airport said as a result of the review's findings, they will now begin discussions on a revised commercial agreement to cover the service going forward.
Hawke's Bay Airport CEO Stuart Ainslie said the results present a robust and comprehensive picture of the airport's air traffic control needs now and into the future.
"The study has considered input from our stakeholders, including airlines, on what passenger numbers and aircraft movements will look like under a number of scenarios – including the pandemic."
The report provides data driven modelling out to 2045 to inform the outcome.
Airways NZ CEO Graeme Sumner said its goal has been to make sure there's an evidence-based service in place at Hawke's Bay Airport that means safety remains paramount, without imposing unnecessary cost on the airlines and operators who fly in and out.
The study will not need Civil Aviation Authority review.
Air traffic control is provided for Hawke's Bay Airport by Airways NZ controllers working in the airport tower.
These controllers oversee aircraft in their first and last stages of flight, as they take-off and land at airport, while the airspace nearby is managed by Airways NZ's radar centre based in Christchurch.
Hawke's Bay Airport's control tower has six employees.
Ainslie shared his delight that the airport will continue to see local air traffic control services for their aviation stakeholders and passengers travelling in and out of the region.
Sumner added that Hawke's Bay Airport plays an essential role in keeping the region connected to New Zealand and the local economy thriving.