Rotorua mayor Steve Chadwick described the update on the Rotorua Airport as "music to our ears".

Her comments came as airport chief executive Mark Gibb revealed passenger movements were up by 20,000 and aircraft movements had also risen.

Gibb's update on the airport including facts and figures as well as progress on its redevelopment and what the future could hold.

He revealed they had finished a feasibility study into creating a general aviation precinct.


"That comprises indicatively 26 hangars. We've got three different designs subject to a conversation in and around consenting but in general terms what is proposed fits within the broader frame of what you would expect in an airport."

Conceptual impression of the Rotorua Airport development. Image / File
Conceptual impression of the Rotorua Airport development. Image / File

Gibb said the hangars could be three different types; a place to park a plane, a place to park and with ablution and kitchen facilities, and potentially an option with a small apartment attached to the hangar.

"As an airport, your aviation business contributes around about three per cent of revenue. Anything over and above that you need to derive that from a broader property portfolio and mix of other airport-related activities," he said.

"What this does is it gives us a very positive property return and also all the users of that precinct will use the runway, they will pay us landing fees, they will drive incremental revenue through other operations and concessions."

Gibb said this would contribute to the airport becoming self-sustaining. They were planning to ask for registrations of interest to get a better idea of the demand for that.

The feasibility study was part of a wider $4.4 million airport upgrade expected to be finished by November and including more on-site businesses, increased security and flasher terminals.

A new arrivals hall should be finished in seven weeks and construction of the departures terminal has started. Asbestos has been removed from the building and demolition of one section of it should start in July, Gibb said.

Chadwick said she was concerned about the road outside the airport and wanted a roundabout on the highway to be a priority.

Rotorua Airport. Photo / File
Rotorua Airport. Photo / File

Gibb said that was also a concern at the airport as staff had attended fatalities and regular crashes outside the gates.

In quarter three of the financial year there had been 202,500 passenger movements and 5852 aircraft movements. The airport had a net surplus of $259,000.