Chatham Islands Airport – Longer and Stronger Project








6 July 2021
The Government has advised that funding has been approved to proceed with the construction phase of Chatham Islands Airport’s (CIAL) project to Lengthen and Strengthen the runway. This funding is in addition to the funding previously approved to complete an Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) and design process.
The Contractor selected to undertake the construction works to Lengthen and Strengthen the CIAL runway is
Downer New Zealand Limited with BECA Limited undertaking contract management for CIAL.
The Construction project is due commence in late August 2021 with completion of the runway components being anticipated in July 2022. In addition to the lengthening and strengthening of the runway and the expansion and strengthening of the apron there are a number ancillary works included to ensure the airport is in a position to accommodate and manage jet aircraft.
This project sits within a suite of projects identified through the Chatham Islands Investment Strategy which is a whole of Islands and all of government strategy to support sustainable growth on the Chatham Islands.
The airport extension has been identified as critical and is the flagship Chatham Island’s infrastructure project which stands to facilitate the expansion of the island’s economy and increase the community’s social wellbeing.
It is anticipated that representatives of CIAL, Downer and BECA will be visiting the island within the next month to provide further detail of the project programme and answer questions the community may have.

For further information:
Allan MacGibbon
Chatham Islands Airport Limited
021 610 851




The funding will be used to design and build the runway extension and the required ancillary services that will allow Code 4C aircraft (Boeing 737/Airbus A 320 Class) to operate on the Chatham Islands.

Enabling Code 4C aircraft will future proof the airport for the next 50 years and will:
allow for the continuation of commercial air services to the Chatham Islands
enable increased capacity, reliability and cost improvements
improve operating economics, which may encourage new air service operators and open up options for export and other business activity on the Chatham Islands.
The scope of work to allow Code 4C aircraft includes the following:


  • extend the runway at the west end from 1,360 metres to 1,850 metres in length.
  • provide Strip End and Runway and Safety Areas of 60 metres and 240 metres at each end of the runway.
  • strengthen the existing runway pavement to facilitate Code 4C aircraft, with 30 departures per month.
  • provide a taxiway with sufficient width and strength to accommodate Code 4C aircraft.
  • extend and strengthen the existing apron sufficiently to accommodate two Code 4C aircraft and two Code B aircraft.
  • provide storm-water drainage.
  • source and supply all material including local or imported aggregate required for the works.
  • relocate the existing lighting system, runway end identifier lights and precision approach path indicators.
  • provide runway edge lights along the extended length of runway to match existing.
  • relocate the windsocks at the 05 end of the runway.

Ancillary services:

For the airport to support Code 4C aircraft other ancillary services will need to be in place to meet regulatory requirements. These include;
airfield navigation aids upgrades.
building upgrading.
electrical, communications, water and wastewater services.
airfield rescue fire service facilities (if required).
perimeter security upgrade.
facility security to meet CAA requirements.