Singapore Airlines will bring another Australian city under the wing of its growing Airbus A350 network this year, with Brisbane and Perth both on the shortlist.
The Star Alliance member already has one year-round A350 flight slated for Melbourne’s SQ207/SQ208 from May 11, while a second A350 is currently running on SQ218/SQ217 until June 30, after which it will revert to the Airbus A380 superjumbo.
“We are now looking at an announcement later on which is the next A350 to Australia,” Singapore Airlines Regional Vice-President for South West Pacific, Mr TK Tan, tells Australian Business Traveller.
Sydney-siders shouldn’t get their hopes up for a ride in SQ’s advanced jetliner, however.
“It’s unlikely to be Sydney because we want a first class product for Sydney, as most of our flights for Sydney have a first class product,” Tan reveals, “so most likely it will be to another point in Australia.”
The coin toss is believed to be between Brisbane and Perth, both of which are strong parts of SQ’s Australian network and host several daily flights on Airbus A330 and Boeing 777-200 jets.
For either city the Airbus A350 would not only represent a jump in the quality of the experience – from a smoother, quieter and more relaxing ride to Singapore Airlines’ latest business class and economy seats – but also see premium economy added to the market.
As previously reported and exclusively to Australian Business Traveller, Tan also revealed that Sydney is likely to see the airline’s first new Airbus A380 superjumbo – sporting all-new first class suites and business class seats – in the fourth quarter of this year but ideally on October 25, to mark the tenth anniversary of the arrival of the world’s first commercial A380 service in 2007.
Brisbane City Council’s proposed metro system will eventually be extended to Chermside, Carindale and Springwood, deputy mayor Adrian Schrinner said, as more details of the revised project were revealed.
According to the council’s plans, the new Chermside line would feed into the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital station, while the Carindale line would feed into the Buranda metro station.
The Springwood line would be an extension of the already announced Eight Mile Plains line, along the South East Busway.
The revelation came weeks before the business case for Brisbane Metro 1 (between Eight Mile Plains and Roma Street) and 2 (between the University of Queensland and the RBWH) was due to be released.
Cr Schrinner said, ideally, the expanded Brisbane Metro would run along the yet-to-be built Eastern Busway and Northern Busway extensions, but it could still be delivered prior to those state projects being completed.
All that would be required in that scenario would be dedicated bus lanes and the construction of Brisbane Metro platforms.
Having the Brisbane Metro mixing with general traffic, Cr Schrinner said, would “defeat the purpose” of the high-frequency service, which would have a service every three minutes during peak times.
“If, for example, you had bus lanes along Old Cleveland Road to Carindale, then you could potentially run metro along those bus lanes all the way out to Carindale,” he said.
“There would be a cost in making some modifications to the infrastructure with the platforms, it could be done relatively quickly.
“We’d need to procure additional vehicles to do that, but in the scheme of things, once we’ve got the model in place and it’s operating with Metro 1 and Metro 2, I think it could be scaled quite quickly.”
The Chermside connection was mooted by Rail: Back on Track public transport lobbyist Robert Dow earlier this week as a future Brisbane Metro route.
Cr Schrinner said the council’s abandonment of its original $1.54 billion Brisbane Metro proposal, which had rubber-tyred trams running along tracks between Woolloongabba and Herston, allowed its future expansion.
Instead, bi-articulated buses would run the high-frequency routes.
“It’s a scalable and expandable project now, which is wasn’t in its original form,” Cr Schrinner said.
“When you’re relying on the tracks, that then limits your flexibility essentially, so that’s one of the advantages of the new (Brisbane Metro), that you can extend it further.”
Future extensions to the Brisbane Metro are shown with the broken yellow lines. Photo: BCC
Details of the new Cultural Centre underground metro station have also been released, although detailed plans of the new station, including artists’ impressions, had not yet be drawn up.
The station would be built about seven metres below the intersection of Grey and Melbourne streets, adjacent to the existing South Brisbane train station.
It would include two 100-metre platforms (inbound and outbound), platform screen doors, real-time passenger information displays, off-board ticketing and escalators.
The proposed location of the Brisbane Metro’s South Brisbane station, which will be seven metres underground. Photo: BCC
The existing Cultural Centre busway station platforms would also be replaced, to cater for bus services connecting West End, the CBD and Fortitude Valley, such as the existing CityGlider services.
Upgrades to six existing busway stations – Eight Mile Plains, Upper Mount Gravatt, Griffith University, Buranda, Mater Hill and Roma Street – would see platforms lengthened, while another 11 stations would need modifications.
Platform screen doors, which would provide a physical barrier from the busways, would also be installed at Brisbane Metro stations.
Cr Schrinner said the final cost of Metro 1 and Metro 2 would be revealed in the business case due next month, but it was expected to be “less than $1 billion”.
“With the new metro, the fact that we’re not worrying about tracks means that we can essentially extend it, provided you have infrastructure like a busway or dedicated right of way,” he said.
“At the very minimum, you’d need dedicated bus lanes. Ideally, you’d need proper stations as well, because these are long vehicles that can’t use a normal bus stations.
“But if you had a busway extended to Carindale or Chermside, you could easily run the metro out to those areas. Wherever the busway is extended, we can look at an extended metro as well.”
At its launch, the Brisbane Metro would require about 60 bi-articulated buses, each with a capacity of about 150 passengers.
The council has announced public information sessions about its Brisbane Metro project would be held at:
King George Square on Saturday, April 8, between 10am and 1pm.
Queen Street Mall main stage (outside Myer) on Monday, April 10, between 11am and 2pm.
Holland Park Library at 81 Seville Road on Tuesday April 11, between noon and 2pm.
Diana Plaza Hotel’s Aventine Room at 12 Annerley Road, Woolloongabba, on Thursday, April 20, between 4pm and 7pm.
Garden City Library at Upper Mount Gravatt on Saturday, April 22, between 10am and 1pm.
Queen Street Mall main stage (outside Myer) on Thursday, April 27, between 11am and 2pm.
Work will begin this year on transforming Queensland’s “largest sandpit” at Brisbane Airport into the newest gateway to Australia – a facility with the same capacity as busy Singapore Airport.
The sandy area – more than eight metres deep in some places and three kilometres long – will become Brisbane’s $1.4 billion new parallel runway by September 2020.
The weight of the 11 million cubic metres of sand has already acted like a giant sponge drawing out water for the past two years.
“Parts of this site have settled almost three metres,” Brisbane’s New Parallel Runway project director Paul Coughlan said.
“The water loss and settlement has slowed dramatically so that is why we are now ready to begin construction, because what is called your ‘primary settlement’ has occurred,” he said.
The runway will mean the number of landings and departures from Brisbane Airport will increase from 227,000 flights a year to 360,000 by 2035 and up to half a million flights a year by 2045.
The first of three new projects to begin this year is a major underpass behind the Domestic Terminal allowing for road traffic to pass underneath and aircraft to cross between the old and new runways.
The $120 million Drynadra Road’s winning tender is expected to be announced within weeks and construction will begin in March 2017. Preparation work is already underway.
By mid-year the second major contract – a $750 million contract to begin building the actual pavement of the new runway – will begin to shape sand into runways.
A $10 million project to build a metre-high new seawall to fight rising tides and storm surges will also begin.
“So 2017 is the start of the really exciting construction of all of the final works for our runway system is about to begin,” Paul Coughlan said.
“The government in the 1980s was planning for parallel runways at the airport and now the Brisbane Airport Corporation is finally delivering that 30-year vision,” he said.
Even though right now it still looks like a huge sand bunker.
The cost of the $1.4 billion project is being met by Brisbane Airport Corporation (75 per cent) and by plane customers (25 per cent) who pay between an extra 35 cents to $1.35 cents on their tickets.
The world’s largest airlines who pay to use Brisbane Airport – including Qantas and Virgin – are not directly paying for the new runway. They passed the cost on to their customers in small ticket price increases, Mr Coughlan said.
Brisbane Airport Corporation has however already spent more than $550 million on the design, the drainage systems, the exporting of sand from Moreton Bay and the sand compaction.
Effectively they have had to rebuild a new Kedron Brook Floodway drain.
“If you looked at this site before we reclaimed it, it was all just tidal creeks, so you had water from the airport than just ran out into tidal creeks,” Mr Coughlan said.
“And so because we were going to reclaim (the tidal creeks) we had to create a new drainage system.”
He said there were no environmental problems identified, though the project team had a large team of consultants monitoring water flow into the new water channels.
Around half the sand will now progressively be moved to two new areas – near the existing domestic terminal apron and also, opposite the domestic airport.
Here, opposite the existing domestic terminal a new terminal will be built at Brisbane Airport in around 20 years.
Distância de Dubai para Brisbane A distancia é 11979 km ou 7443 milhas ou 6468 milhas náuticas A distância é a distância do ar teórica (distância ortodrômica). Voar entre aeroportos dos dois locais pode ser uma distância diferente, dependendo da localização dos aeroportos e via real escolhida. Mapa – caminho mais curto entre Dubai e Brisbane
O mapa está usando uma projeção que faz a terra e oceanos muito mais amplo perto do pólo sul e pólos norte. O título / curso / rolamento durante um voo varia na maioria dos casos. Roteiro com base na imagem da NASA.
Distância de Guadalajara a Brisbane A distancia é 12344 km ou 7670 milhas ou 6665 milhas náuticas A distância é a distância do ar teórica (distância ortodrômica). Voar entre aeroportos dos dois locais pode ser uma distância diferente, dependendo da localização dos aeroportos e via real escolhida. Mapa – caminho mais curto entre Guadalajara e Brisbane
O mapa é usando uma projeção que faz a terra e oceanos muito mais amplas perto do pólo sul e pólo norte. O título / curso/ rolamento durante um voo varia na maioria dos casos. Roteiro com base na imagem da NASA.
Latitude: 20 ° 40 ‘Norte
Longitude: 103 ° 21 ‘Oeste
posição inicial: 247.5 ° Oeste-sudoeste
título final: 256.9 ° Oeste-sudoeste
Latitude: 27 ° 28 ‘Sul
Longitude: 153 ° 02 ‘do leste
posição inicial: 76,9 ° leste-nordeste
título final: 67,5 ° leste-nordeste
Distância de Vancouver a Brisbane A distancia é 11851 km ou 7364 milhas ou 6399 milhas náuticas A distância é a distância do ar teórica (distância ortodrômica). Voar entre aeroportos dos dois locais ‘pode ser uma distância diferente, dependendo da localização dos aeroportos e via real escolhida.
Mapa – caminho mais curto entre Vancouver e Brisbane Vancouver Brisbane O mapa é usando uma projeção que faz a terra e oceanos muito mais amplo perto do pólo sul e pólos norte. O título / curso / rolamento durante um voo varia na maioria dos casos. Roteiro com base na imagem da NASA. Vancouver Latitude: 49 ° 17 ‘Norte Longitude: 123 ° 07 ‘Oeste posição inicial: 247.1 ° Oeste-sudoeste título final: 222,6 ° Sudoeste Brisbane Latitude: 27 ° 28 ‘Sul Longitude: 153 ° 02 ‘do leste posição inicial: 42,6 ° Nordeste título final: 67,1 ° leste-nordeste
Singapore Airlines (SIA) is adding extra flights to its already-hefty Australian schedule in 2017, with Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney set to receive more services.
Melbourne will increase to 31 flights a week from July 17 2017, from 28 currently, with a fifth daily service to operate on Monday, Friday and Saturday with Airbus A330-300s as a red-eye from Singapore and lunchtime departure from the Victorian capital.
Meanwhile, SIA is switching one of its four daily Melbourne-Singapore flights to a four-class Boeing 777-300ER featuring first, business, premium economy and economy from January.
On the Brisbane-Singapore route, SIA said it grow its schedule to 28 flights a week, from 24 currently, from August 22 2017.
And the Star Alliance member will have 35 flights a week (or five flights a day) on the Sydney-Singapore route during the peak travel period between June and September 2017. Outside of this peak period, SIA operates 33 times a week between Sydney and Singapore. Separately, SIA said it would have double-daily A380 flights to the NSW capital during the peak winter period.
The planned capacity increases comes after SIA launched its new Capital Express service linking Singapore, Canberra and Wellington in September.
The Virgin Australia shareholder and alliance partner had planned a new Sydney-Jakarta-Singapore flight that was due to launch in November. However, the launch was postponed due to what SIA said was runway maintenance works at Jakarta’s Soekarno-Hatta International Airport.
And the airline has also boosted its premium passenger offering with a new SilverKris lounge at Brisbane Airport.
SIA regional vice president for South West Pacific Tan Tiow Kor noted 2017 marked the airline’s 50th year of operations to Australia.
“We are looking forward to the year ahead and are excited by the prospect of celebrating our 50th anniversary flying to Australia,” Tan said in a statement.
“The increase in services and capacity announced today reinforce our longstanding commitment and investment to Australia and the South West Pacific region.”
Figures from the Bureau of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Economics showed SIA was Australia’s second largest foreign carrier in the 12 months to June 30 2016 with an 8.4 per cent share of the market in terms of passengers carried.
At its peak, SIA and its regional wing Silkair have 145 flights a week between Singapore and Australia, serving Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Cairns, Darwin, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney.