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Cork Airport - What does the future hold ?


Rebelman

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Cork Airport is a great resource to the entire region. It is a gateway for both commerce and tourism and as the greater Cork continues to develop, its significance continues to grow and grow. There has been much debate its future thus far including the thorny issue of the debt and linked directly to that our need to break free from the DAA. What do people think the future should hold for this key regional and national resource ?
 

Rich OC

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Being saddled with debt is the biggest worry for Cork Airport. It looks like a strategy by DAA to keep Dublin and Shannon down, and whats more it is supported by Bertie.

It is a great airport and I have used it several times in preference to Dublin (I live in Wexford). It should be able to operate as a significant airport for UK and European flights, but if it is saddled with the debt this will hamper future development, and greatly reduce the choices available to it. In that scenario taking on a model similar to Charleroi in Belgium.
 

Reggie Perrin

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Cork Airport Rebelman is a fine job.... all the more so being very accessible for a large part of the Munster area and the road infrastructure to it around Cork being pretty good.

The debt thing is a disaster. Also Cork maybe needs more flights from the likes of Ryanair (who of course just moan and whinge about the Charges) and Charter Flights. It's European destinations while expanding are still too limited and there should be far more.... Shannon doesnt help in that sense.

Also it's high time it got it's share of transatlantic flights....
 

morrissey

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The Government must honour the promise made to the people of Cork for a debt free status. Any other outcome is simply unacceptable. The Airport is indeed a magnificant part of the infrastructure for the south of the country. The failure of the minister sitting at the cabinet table to defend the airports position is surely on of the greatest failures of Mr Martin.

The second FF TD elected in Cork South Central Mr McGrath openly campaigned in opposition to the position of his party. In effect four of the five representatives for C.S.C. are of the oppinion that the government must free the airport of the crippiling debt being imposed on it. At the end of the day will Mr McGrath do the honourable thing and resign if the government fails to live up to its promise? Like hell he will !

Ultimately the Airport will struggle on in permanent debt and will be denied the right to develope to its ful potential. A testomy to a weak minister and a Airport Board more willing to do the bidding of their political masters rather than perform the function they were ment to perform.
 

Reggie Perrin

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Imo Cork Airport doesnt have as many flights or flight destinations as it should.... is this in any way related to/affected by the debt burden it is shouldering? cos if it is then maybe ppl in the Cork area and surrounds should be told about it... instead of having to travel to the inconvenience that is Dublin Airport, or through the traffic inconvience that is Limerick and travel inconvenience that is 2 1/2 hours drive to Shannon Airport.

Cork ppl are proud of their City and County and maybe a concerted campaign is necessary to get them up and running and behind the removal of the debt farce.... Of course it goes without saying the the Cork Politicans need to do the same and stand up and be heard, including the FF ones

I remember hearing that an issue to Cork ppl before the Election was the debt over Cork Airport... i think if figured reasonably high up in their gripes list...
 

renewal

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[start of snip]
Cork Airport is a great resource to the entire region. It is a gateway for both commerce and tourism and as the greater Cork continues to develop, its significance continues to grow and grow. There has been much debate its future thus far including the thorny issue of the debt and linked directly to that our need to break free from the DAA. What do people think the future should hold for this key regional and national resource ?
[end of snip]

Yes it is a key regional and national resource. I'm saddened though that there is no viewing area with a shop to enjoy this resource and appreciate aviation in general. Recently I had to brave the traffic beyond the airport so I could see the planes take off and land with my young daughter. Croke Park, Old Trafford - they all have a tour finishing in a shop. I feel the airport missed out by not having a viewing area with a shop, especially at the price of 180 million Euro. I don't see the airport as being for the people of Cork or the south in general instead only for numbers, a bit like RyanAir - "here's your cheap ticket, now bugger off".

As an aside I was a wedding a while back and the man next to me mentioned how he was at the Nemo Ranger ground one day and met some people from Carlow who had come down just to see the place. It kinda blew my mind but that's the gaa crowd for you I guess.

I'm sure Cork Airport will survive albeit rather slowly but with an overall price of as it turns out 220 million including the original debt of 40 million being reduced to 120 million we might has well have sold the whole area and build a brand new terminal and airstrip next to Amgen on the proposed Cork-Midleton railway line. Then there would have been enough space to transatlantic flights and no fog. Currently being the top of mountain means plenty of diversions to Shannon because of fog and no room for a longer airstrip facilitating transatlantic flight. We might have got a viewing area thrown in too :)
 
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It would seem to me, that is Dublin Airport is the one with the massive wealth - and if i'm wrong correct me here- but they also get Aer Rianta's international assets. It's absolutely imperative from a base point that the other airports be debt free.

Anything else should not be tolerated.

Because if this is not the case, all it does is acknowledge the supremecy of Dublin - and by making the regional airports independent but debt-laden it will perpetuate an unfair advantage that Dublin Airport will already have.
 

renewal

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Yes it was the DAA who made the decision to saddle Cork with a debt of 120 million Euro or wait for yongs in a netherland while Dublin Airport is upgraded. No Cork people were on this board. Personally I see it as a major slipup of the Cork FF & PD politicians at the time to see this coming ensure at least a member of the Cork Airport Board was on the DAA who owned Cork Airport at the time to fight Cork Airport's corner. I'd say there were smirks all around the table as the DAA made that decision. There was something also about a landbank at the airport for sale too but I'm not too sure what happened there.

As you say David Dublin Airport may now reign supreme with other airports being laden down with debt but I suspect we haven't heard the end of this yet. I don't know why it is but big projects in Ireland often seem to leave a sour taste in the mouth.
 

Schuhart

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David Cochrane said:
It would seem to me, that is Dublin Airport is the one with the massive wealth - and if i'm wrong correct me here- but they also get Aer Rianta's international assets.
In brief, I think you are wrong. DAA does retain the international business. But it also carries the cost of restructuring at Shannon, Shannon's debts and most of Cork's. If memory serves, there's also the question of legacy pension entitlements. So the picture of Dublin being showered with largesse is simply not true. The actual situation is Dublin continues to limp along with an inadequate airport while its resources are used to prop up Shannon and Cork.

The problem with this is that Dublin is genuinely a national resource and the only airport capable of generating passenger numbers at a sufficient scale to support routes to a large number of locations. Policies, such as the historical Shannon stopover, that seek to promote the regional airports by hamstringing Dublin, strangle the country.

Lets also recall that the reason the DAA were able to stave off the heavy political pressure to take on the entire Cork debt was that they were able to point out this had implications for their solvency. Again, the picture of Dublin being given some great benefit by only having to cover most of Cork and all of Shannon does not stand up to scrutiny.

That's not to say that State funds (rather than Dublin Airport funds) should not be used to make Cork debt free as it does have a role in promoting regional development. On the same day that it was announced that Cork would have to carry some of its own debt there was a package of investments announced for the regional airports paid for by the taxpayer (regional airports as in non-former Aer Rianta ones like Knock). Those airports combined serve fewer passengers than Cork and make a negligible contribution to regional development.

The real question is why the €86 million wasted on the pointless toy airports was not used to reduce the Cork Airport debt where it might have actually made a contribution to regional development and the establishment of a self-sustaining centre outside Dublin.
 

mollox

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Schuhart said:
The real question is why the €86 million wasted on the pointless toy airports was not used to reduce the Cork Airport debt where it might have actually made a contribution to regional development and the establishment of a self-sustaining centre outside Dublin.
You're surely not suggesting that the €86m package, announced by Minister Cullen in Feb 07, which included €22.3m for Waterford airport, could have been better spent?

No Waterford votes in that approach, with a general election only 3 months away!
 

locke

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andrew said:
I have used Cork airport many times, and I find its quite poor compared to other small airports. Theres very little public transport to and from it. You can get the kinsale bus (if you can get a seat), or the ancient dedicated airport bus (which is infrequent and takes some odd detours through the airport business park). If you arrive on an early Aer Arran flight, your only option is to get an expensive taxi, because the "frequent direct coach" Bus Eireann has gaps of an hour and 5 minutes between departures.

Maybe if they offered better access to the airport, people might use it more, and if people use it more, then more destinations can be provided. The debt issue is a bit of a red herring.
Don't be stupid.

Just buy a car like everyone else.

:roll:
 

Eirenua

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andrew said:
I have used Cork airport many times, and I find its quite poor compared to other small airports. Theres very little public transport to and from it. You can get the kinsale bus (if you can get a seat), or the ancient dedicated airport bus (which is infrequent and takes some odd detours through the airport business park). If you arrive on an early Aer Arran flight, your only option is to get an expensive taxi, because the "frequent direct coach" Bus Eireann has gaps of an hour and 5 minutes between departures.

Maybe if they offered better access to the airport, people might use it more, and if people use it more, then more destinations can be provided. The debt issue is a bit of a red herring.
You obviously are a freqeunt flyer to Cork because you are spot on about the transport. Shocking is the word I would use. Taxi's are very expensive and as you say Bus Eireann is a joke. A private bus service is now in operation but because there is not enough flights, the operators are thinking of pulling out.
 

locke

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I've seen the service, but although it goes to city centre hotels, it really does just duplicate the Bus Eireann service. If they want to succeed, they could look at serving places not served by Bus Eireann - like UCC or the train station. At least the price has come down, because previously two people on the bus made taking a taxi more worthwhile.
 

Reggie Perrin

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andrew said:
I have used Cork airport many times, and I find its quite poor compared to other small airports. Theres very little public transport to and from it. You can get the kinsale bus (if you can get a seat), or the ancient dedicated airport bus (which is infrequent and takes some odd detours through the airport business park). If you arrive on an early Aer Arran flight, your only option is to get an expensive taxi, because the "frequent direct coach" Bus Eireann has gaps of an hour and 5 minutes between departures.

Maybe if they offered better access to the airport, people might use it more, and if people use it more, then more destinations can be provided. The debt issue is a bit of a red herring.
What do you mean by "small airport" Andrew... presumably you've seen the new terminal building.... jeez Cork Airport is bigger that quite a few European counterparts serving larger areas/cities

:evil:
 

corkman2007

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Jun 5, 2007
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Scrap the debt and let the airport borrow money to expand the runway, improve the navigation systems, refurbish the old terminal for use by low-cost airlines (and connect the two terminals) and subsidise improved public transport links to the city centre, the suburbs and nearby places like Carrigaline, Passage, Ringaskiddy etc.
 

Schuhart

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corkman2007 said:
Scrap the debt
I don't think anyone has a particular problem with 'scrapping the debt'. The problem is 'scrapping the debt' involves taking money from somewhere. That's the issue.

I'd 'scrap the debt', or at least the bulk of it, by not investing €80+ million in no-hope regional airports. A reflection on the Knock flyglobespan experience should throw into relief the extent to which regional airports policy is done mostly for the comedy. Only its laughter at our expense, using our tax dollars.

That's what it keeps coming back to. I don't mean to be rude, but 'scrap the debt' is only rhetoric that avoids the issue.
 

corkman2007

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Schuhart said:
corkman2007 said:
Scrap the debt
I don't think anyone has a particular problem with 'scrapping the debt'. The problem is 'scrapping the debt' involves taking money from somewhere. That's the issue.

I'd 'scrap the debt', or at least the bulk of it, by not investing €80+ million in no-hope regional airports. A reflection on the Knock flyglobespan experience should throw into relief the extent to which regional airports policy is done mostly for the comedy. Only its laughter at our expense, using our tax dollars.

That's what it keeps coming back to. I don't mean to be rude, but 'scrap the debt' is only rhetoric that avoids the issue.
There was 'a pledge by former transport minister Seamus Brennan that the Cork Airport authorities would start out debt-free following the break-up of Aer Rianta into separate airport authorities.' (Sunday Business Post, 22nd January, 2007)

That pledge should be honoured. Cork isn't a 'no-hope regional airport'. It's a vital and successful part of the region's transport infrastructure. The successes or failures of other airports in Ireland shouldn't determine the future of Cork Airport.

BTW, the problems at Knock are the fault of flyglobespan, not the airport. That airline is badly managed.
 
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