Just a few hours after the owners of Sydney's main airport declined the federal government's offer to build a second airport at Badgery's Creek, the Turnbull government has stepped up to say that it will use taxpayer dollars to build the airport itself.
In a media release from the Prime Minister's office, the Turnbull-led Liberal federal government has committed to building the second international airport in Sydney's west — which it is calling Western Sydney Airport — which it calls "vitally important for Western Sydney, for Sydney, and the nation".
Earlier this morning, Sydney Airport Group — the owners of Sydney's Kingsford Smith international airport — said that it would not build the airport under the right of first refusal, which was part of its contract to purchase the first airport when it was privatised in 2002. SAG was presented with the government's terms in mid-December, which set out the outline for the design and construction of the airport.
Under those terms, the Badgery's Creek airport would have included a terminal with the capacity to move 10 million passengers per year, and a 3700-metre main runway. By comparison, Kingsford Smith airport's main runway is 3962 metres in length, and in 2016 its combined terminals shuttled a total of 41 million passengers.
Where the current Sydney airport is 8 kilometres south of the CBD, Badgery's Creek is 51 kilometres due west of the city.