Airport a 'disgrace': Corrigan | Australian Frequent Flyer
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Airport a 'disgrace': Corrigan

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Junior Member
Jul 22, 2002
Airport a 'disgrace': Corrigan
July 22, 2002 -

PATIRCK Corp chief executive Chris Corrigan today said delays in giving Virgin Blue Airlines access to the former Ansett terminal slots in Sydney was a disgrace.

Virgin Blue, in which Patrick acquired a 50 per cent stake for $260 million in March, is seeking access to about eight of the 30 abandoned Ansett terminal slots from Sydney Airport Corporation (SAC).

Mr Corrigan today blamed lengthy bureaucratic procedures for the delays, and said he would prefer to deal with a government department.

"It's not fair to the passengers that they have to queue up in lines like this to get to the airport, to get through to their flights," Mr Corrigan told journalists at Sydney airport, pointing to queues spilling out of Virgin's temporary terminal and onto the footpath outside.

"It's really a disgrace that Sydney airport have got an empty terminal down the way with nobody in it, absolutely nothing in it - it's been like that for nine months or so, 10 months, they've owned it for two months - and what we're being told is that they're considering their options," Mr Corrigan said.

"I don't know what options they've got, but clearly Virgin has an agreement to go in there, we've settled all the major terms and we're being told, 'We're considering our options and we may be able to get you there in September or November'.

"In the meantime, the travelling public are the losers because they're having to queue up in this obscene fashion that we're seeing here today."

Mr Corrigan said Virgin Blue's discussions with SAC were intensely bureaucratic. He said the airport's new 40 per cent owner Macquarie Bank Ltd, whose Southern Cross consortium acquired the airport last month for $5.6 billion, took no responsibility for the delay.

"I complained to someone at Macquarie Bank about it and they said 'We're three levels above this' - three levels above it for God's sake," Mr Corrigan said.

"Somebody ought to get out here and find out what's going on.

"I don't even know how the passengers know what queue they're in - are they in the check-in queue, are they in the security queue, God knows."

Mr Corrigan said Virgin was not seeking access to the entire Ansett terminal, which would prevent a third domestic carrier from using the unused space.

"We're not asking for the whole terminal, we're asking for just enough gates to operate efficiently and safely," he said.

"We're negotiated over Pier A of that terminal, or even part of Pier A, but we're being given the bureaucratic runaround."

He said Virgin Blue was told an extra security gate at its current terminal facility would take another three months to install.

"That should take three days - the whole (Virgin Blue) terminal was built in two months," he said.

Mr Corrigan said the delays, which had never been explained to Virgin Blue, centred on establishing increasing airport fees for travellers.

"I imagine they're trying to see how much more they can gouge out of the travelling public by charging them some massive amount of money for access to that terminal," he said.

Meanwhile, the delays were costing Virgin Blue customers. Mr Corrigan said Virgin Blue's request was reasonable considering the airline was seeking access to a small portion of the Ansett terminal.

"We've got a fleet of 20 aircraft now, going to 30 by the end of the year, we've got about a 20 per cent market share, and we need about seven or eight gates," Mr Corrigan said.

"I think in that terminal over there, that Ansett empty terminal, there's probably 30 gates.

"We're not asking for much, we're asking for a bit of it on reasonable terms, which have already been negotiated ...

"We've been trying to negotiate the last final details for moving into the terminal and all we get about is board meetings.

"What kind of nonsense is this?" Virgin has secured access to disused Ansett terminal gates at most other key east coast Australian airports, including Melbourne, Brisbane and Townsville. Patrick Corp shares were down 12 cents at $15.30 by 1123 AEST.



Corrigan has been hanging out with the whingers at Virgin Blue for far too long - he's starting to sound like them.

These closet communists want to have their cake and eat it too - they crow from the rooftops about how cool they are when they undercut Qantas, then run screaming to that ninny in charge of the ACCC when Qantas does the same thing to them.

If they're not prepared to pay for the terminals, then tough, they can stay in their bus shelter. Welcome to the capitalist economic system, Virgin Blue.


Jan 2, 2003
ADL Airport, SA

Talking about 'airport a disgrace',

When are they going to upgrade ADL international terminal ?

For those who haven't heard, there have been various comments thrown around about it for years - the best one being 'a shed'.

This is just one of them :-

Although severely lacking in the rest of the site, this page does give a good opinion on the ADL terminal. For example - yes, "the domestic terminal is the only one in a mainland Australian capital without airbridges and the international terminal is little better than a tin shed which at peak times is hopelessly overcrowded.". If you ever talk to some of the locals or read the 'tizer (advertiser), it's a standing joke.

The domestic facilities are poor as well - sometimes I am in ADL and pick up business contacts there from the airport who fly in later. In the DOM terminal, I can't actually recall any provision being made for food, bar a couple of vending machines in the QF part and a newsagent.

This gives a better opinion :-

Downer criticises ‘hicksville’ Adelaide airport

Federal foreign minister Alexander Downer said the “shabby” state of Adelaide’s airport was damaging the city’s and South Australia’s image.

Downer told AAP the “hicksville style” airport created a poor first impression for visiting business travellers and foreign dignitaries, affecting their investment decisions.

Describing the airport as “the most old-fashioned, dysfunctional and shabby capital city airport in Australia”, Downer said he thought it would be better to be able to welcome guests at a “slightly more modern airport”.

Virgin Blue and Qantas recently signed with Adelaide Airport to build a new $200 million terminal to be ready by late 2004, but the carriers are currently working through documentation, planning and design issues.

Downer urged the SA premier to ensure the new terminal was a high priority and completed by the end of 2004.

(My my, we may actually see it by next year then.
:roll: )


Re: ADL Airport, SA

icemann said:
Talking about 'airport a disgrace',

When are they going to upgrade ADL international terminal ?

Dude, it's Adelaide.

Who cares?

From the desk of Peter Berner:

"And those of you living in Adelaide, who are planning to travel interstate tomorrow: we understand".


Apr 27, 2003
LT Gold
My Map
These closet communists want to have their cake and eat it too - they crow from the rooftops about how cool they are when they undercut Qantas, then run screaming to that ninny in charge of the ACCC when Qantas does the same thing to them.

If they're not prepared to pay for the terminals, then tough, they can stay in their bus shelter. Welcome to the capitalist economic system, Virgin Blue.
The winging is just part of the political game :!: Isn't it :?: Try and get the silent majority to side with the underdog, irespective of the realities. That's how big business works :?:

They hand Qantas the whole of the business market and then when a few realities of big business come home to bite, they then cry poor.

Great if you can get away with it :!:


Jun 20, 2002
LT Silver
My Map
Having flown into and out of Adelaide this week, I agree with both sides. It's only a pain when it's raining and you get wet. Shrug your shoulders, head for the QC and drown your sorrow :wink: :D
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