Tag Archives: airport

Extra Nelson Jobs bonus for Nelson Real Estate – UPDATED

August 17, 2010

Local employment prospects received a shot in the arm with the recent opening of Air Nelson’s (Air New Zealand link partner) $14m new hangar. The fact that it is now there (in a pretty unmistakeably way) and that there existed plenty of technical expertise already here, aided Air Nelson in landing the contract to maintain Mt Cook Airlines 11 strong fleet of ATR72 aircraft.


Championing for the ATR72 work last year, Grant Kerr, General Manager Air Nelson was reported back in Dec 2009 (Flightpath Issue #25 December 2009) as saying;

That work would include maintenance on a total of 52 (Ed – combined numbers of different airframes) aircraft, and would expand options for Nelson travellers by incorporating the ATR into scheduled passenger services…… expansion into the maintenance of the ATR fleet could add about another $10 million annually to the local economy.

That’s good news for local Nelson Real Estate, because the addition of 30 high paying technology jobs will more than likely mean new candidates, many fresh to town, who will want to buy a house in Nelson.

Don’t get me wrong on the real estate front here, it just might not quite dawn on them to begin with.

“It was just work in Nelson, after all.”

However after living here for 6 months or a year, even more so if there are school age children involved, then, like many before them, they will definitely want to get out of renting and look to purchasing a Nelson property.

And why wouldn’t they?

Nelson Bays capital appreciation is right up there with the best in the country, that’s why.

Even if they did move on in 5 or 10 years it would make sense to have a property that could be rented out, while still having a healthy asset growing….a nest egg for the future.

Major Work comes to Port Nelson

Visitors to Port Nelson over the last 6 months would have seen a couple of large unusual arrivals, the first being the InterIslander ferry, “Arahua” and just lately (still here in fact) the large purse-seiner “Cape Ferrat.”  The main reason they are here?

Don’t forget we are the largest fishing port in Australasia, and that usually means lots of boats that require maintenance.

What should be called the Nelson Marine / Maritime Engineering Hub that has developed at the Port is why. The co-operation / project management / synergy of so many different maritime/marine services/suppliers and tradesmen located in the same geographical area aids tremendously in accomplishing any major marine work swiftly and efficiently.

Its these type of reasons that made it logical & practical to award the tender for the Arahua’s major works to Port Nelson, and same again, with a main engine replacement planned, along with associated work including a slipway session to the 82m long tuna fisher Cape Ferrat, which arrived at Port Nelson over a month ago, after a 15 day sea tow.

Same formula applies here too – more work – more specialist jobs for Nelson – more workers needing housing.

NAC – no not that NAC

On a similar vein, the Nelson Aviation Cluster (NAC) is there to serve all matter of things aviation / aircraft wise.

Nelson Aviation Cluster

Nelson Aviation Cluster

Commenting on its creation in 2009, Nelson Airport Chief Executive Kaye McNabb said

The potential client base is vast. Aircraft owners will hop from Australia to get the service they want. Nelson Airport already has restricted Point of First Arrival certification allowing border clearance for overseas aircraft to fly direct to Nelson for servicing.

Safe to say big jets aren’t something that I think we can do, the runways not long enough to start with, but most everything else, in the words of a certain builder called Bob, “we can do it.”

Nelsons Airport (which was granted that restricted International Airport status in 2006) is the nations 4th busiest, with an aircraft movement on average, of every 4 ½ minutes during scheduled operational hours. Approximately 1.2 million people use the Nelson Airport terminal every year, and surprisingly out of that, nearly 50 percent of travellers through the airport are business people.

Many business folk commute to Wellington or Auckland for the work week, and then for rest, relaxation and family life. returning to NZ’s sunshine capital for the weekend.

Rob Burdekin talking with Nelson Mayor Kerry Marshall and other dignitaries

Rob Burdekin, far right, talking with Nelson Mayor Kerry Marshall and other dignitaries

Rob Burdekin,  Air Nelson Technical Manager just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to let Wellington know;

“….. Government’s focus for aviation was too centred on places such as the Waikato. To be honest, if you look at the money that’s involved, you’d find this region’s bigger. We’d like to see some of that focus and support.”

You tell ’em Rob.


The Nelson Mail report on Monday (Page 4) that PM John Key told them;

“……. the new hangar was important to the region as it would develop a lot of jobs and would help tourism.”

‘‘It certainly makes the airport stronger,’’ Mr Key said.

‘‘Having invested so much in engineering means that you’re going to see support for local air services, but primarily this is all about engineering jobs. The plan is to be able to service all of the turboprop planes here and free up Christchurch totally for jets. That’s good”

Maybe those words from the Air Nelson Technical Manager didn’t fall on deaf ears?

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Nelson today, NZ Prime Minister John Key officially opens new $12m Air New Zealand Hangar

August 14th, 2010

Remember this…

Proposed New Hangar

Proposed New Hangar

It was April earlier this year. The 80m x 60m building has only taken 9 months to complete.

Hangar now ready for business (click on photo to enlarge to monster size)

Hangar now ready for business (click on photo to enlarge to monster size)

Well she’s all finished now and today was the official Opening, Official blessing and Public day all rolled into one.

Open Day was today

Open Day was today

Just to complete the picture, a Mt Cook ATR72 showed up too.

Mt Cook Airlines ATR72-212A arriving

Mt Cook Airlines ATR72-212A arriving

These are the planes from Air New Zealand’s Mt Cook Airline division that Air Nelson will now be performing maintenance on, and can only perform work because of the existence of this new hangar.

John Key and party arrives

John Key and party arrives

The official ceremonies got underway when the official party arrived.

Nelson MP Nick Smith arrives late...

Nelson MP Nick Smith arrives late...

Local MP Nick Smith arrives.

the ceremony continues..

the ceremony continues..

The blessing and official welcome continues….

Inside Hangar (click to enlarge / monster size)

Inside Hangar (click to enlarge / monster size)

And this is what its all about…

ATR was popular

ATR was popular

The “not usually sighted in these parts” ATR72-212A was a popular choice for many of the hundreds of sightseers on the day.

ATR72-212A Information

ATR72-212A Information

On account of the new maintenance contract though, these planes will now become a more common sight around Nelson airspace.

Air NZs Q300s lined up on a Sunday morning earlier this year

Air NZ's Q300s lined up on a Sunday morning earlier this year

Alongside Air Nelsons existing 23 x Q300’s, Mt Cooks ATR72’s have now meant Air Nelson could employ up to another 30 aircraft engineers, a great boost for the local economy.

There were many extra exhibitors there too and quite a selection of interested sightseers meant a busy time for all.

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Last week an extra 30 jobs for Nelson and now this week

May 3rd. 2010

I’m on the way to an early appointment this am…………and……….whats that?

….my senses are alerted by what I spot out in Tasman Bay – I find I’m asking myself “whats going on here?”

I find a better vantage point and………….in the privacy of my car I say to myself –  “that doesn’t belong here – it belongs in Picton doesn’t it?”

A very out of place ship here out in Tasman Bay?

Arahua only runs between Wellington & Picton, fulltime and frankly that’s all she does 24hrs a day, doesn’t she?

Did the Captain have too much to drink last night and forget where he was going? Is she lost?

Well on account of the fact that I spot the Nelson Pilot boat coming back in, and also spot a Tug in the vicinity, it doesn’t take Einstein to figure out that its an arranged situation.

But this has never happened before – why now – what gives?  What’s going on?

Luckily I had 15 minutes up my sleeve, because I always like to arrive early, prepped and fully planned for that early appt…..so could afford to hang around for another 10mins to see what’s going on.

Just situation normal it turned out – boat arrives out in the bay – pilot goes out to meet it and bring it in…..

closer to port …………Tugboat arrives and is there in case assistance is needed……and at the end of the day morning she safely comes into port?

Could this be the start of something exciting?

The “Interislander” brand is very much associated (I advance & suggest ubiquitously with the NZ psyche on this one) with the standard way to get from the North Island to the South Island of New Zealand. (and the other way too)

CLICK ABOVE PHOTO for MONSTER IMAGE (and depending on yr browser you may have to even click again…its a big photo after all!)

Regular readers will recall how just a week ago Nelson had wrenched away from a major metro population centre in NZ – a crucial multi million dollar contract.

At that time I was speaking about Air New Zealands decision to award Nelson and our new NZD$16m hangar (to be completed by Jun/Jul this year) the task of looking after practically all of New Zealand’s turbo-prop fleet – all Q300’s and all ATR72’s.

That was “us” in favour of one of Air NZ’s major maintenance bases in Chch, however that said – around about this time – they jointly announced a major push from their end to focus on short haul jet services – meaning  B737’s and  Airbus A320 types.

And today, Nelsons’ “ship comes in.”

Long story short, local paper “The Nelson Mail” reports tonight that the boat is here is for a month long, what is termed an “in-water” survey….along with associated maintenance. (according to the Nelson Mail the 1st time a local mob has won such  major contract)

The “Nelson Mail” reports that importantly a major factor in seeing local Nelson companies awarded the contract was ;

based on the level of engineering skill and the marine engineering infrastructure at Port Nelson

Really its all just extra reinforcement for the local trades that supply, repair, maintain, fix, and “do everything else in this part of the world” for Australasia’s busiest fishing port!

Up to 30 additional Airline Engineering positions for Nelson

April 23 2010

In light of Air New Zealands recent decision to focus utilisation of its Christchurch engineering base for narrow body jet aircraft, like the A320 & 737, comes the great news that Nelson will be the point of call now for the main turboprop families.

As I earlier mentioned a few weeks back, the June 2010 completion of our new NZD$16m hanger (which can hold 5 x Q300’s under its roof at one time) could definitely have something to do with it.

PHOTO CREDIT – Wikipedia Yonny19

And this, above, is what all the fuss is about.


Although local Air New Zealand link operator Air Nelson operate 23 x Bombardier Q300 aircraft,

their sister company Mt Cook Airlines,


operate 11 of the larger ATR72-500’s pictured above.

These ATR72 aircraft will now call Nelson, and once completed, the new hangar, home for their maintenance work.

If your interesting in applying then keep an eye out here, or head on over here, or at Air NZ job search here.

If you’re overseas, but licensed on certain planes and would like to moved to NZ, check out here and click on the blue coloured Licensed/Trade TAB .

It could also mean other benefits too, Air Nelsons planes are 50 seaters, while Mt Cook Airlines ATR’72-500s are 68 seaters, and it would surely make no sense to fly them to Nelson, or away from, empty?

Here’s the article from the Nelson Mail.

And my earlier talk about the new hangar here.

UPDATE: the discussion about this news also made the editorial in tonights paper.

Nelson – now this is exciting

6th April 2010

Just back from a work related overseas trip, Rob from Air Nelson Operations, told me;

“that the expertise that we have locally is now starting to be seen on the worldwide stage for what it is“

Not just that, it’s being appreciated and is resulting in extra demand for local staff’s expertise.

As evidenced by the tail of this non – New Zealand skies plane above, today, in the old hanger, local outfit Air Nelson has been recognised, by the quantity of inbound work orders, as right up there with best practice in this part of the world.

QUESTION – what airline is this because I haven’t seen it in NZ skies I’m sure?

Professor Bob Hargreaves from Massey Universities real estate analysis unit has stated that Auckland and Wellington have both seen pressure, in an upwards fashion, in their individual rental markets.

Logically, for a small density population place like NZ, the suggestion also extenuated to hint that this trend was in line with net migration trends.

However, interestingly enough, the professor pointed out that it was a “bit surprising” that somewhere like Nelson hadn’t seen its median rental figure rise in any significant way over the last 24 months.

He said “most areas have gone up a bit.”

And in a telling statement the Professor went on to re-iterate;

“rents were related to population pressures, and while Nelson was a beautiful place to live, there weren’t that many jobs here, and the jobs the region did have did not pay that well”

Locally this scenario in wages is referred to as the “sunshine wage.”

However the point of today’s post is the exciting news down at our own Nelson Airport.

Local Nelsonian & friend, Tony Quickfall from ViaStrada, also had  a bit to do with the Resource Consent side of things for this exciting development.

And no to the contrary………..its not about the local wild-life.

Local Air New Zealand subsidiary, Air Nelson is only months away from opening their brand new NZD$16,000,000 hanger and associated facilities.

Air Nelson has invested $450 million upgrading their fleet from the 33-seat Saab 340 aircraft to the 50-seat Bombardier Q300 aircraft over the past three years.

What many don’t know is that the Q300’s actually have a better more roomy “leg-room” situation that the B737’s Air NZ are still using on the main trunk routes. Plus don’t forget that as the wing is above, ala’ as in like the ole “Friendships” every single window seat on the plane gets an uninterrupted view of whats below during your flight.

The airline currently operates 23 of the new Q300s. The old hanger couldn’t even have one of Air New Zealands 23 x Q300’s drive straight in.

Even I had to pinch myself when I managed to get this shot last weekend!

Local staff had to build a contraption machine to secure, and then raise the front wheel of the plane, so that they could then trundle it forward otherwise the tail of the airplane just wouldn’t fit under the old hanger entrance way.

The new building completely dispenses with that idea, in fact, it will comfortably fit 5 of the current Bombardier Q300’s inside at one time.

Incidentally its reputedly to be New Zealand’s single largest roof ever constructed and jacked up in this fashion.

But wait……there’s more………….. and that’s the really exciting part.

Especially after that previous statement by Massey’s Mr Hargreaves.

The new hanger, will for the first time give Nelsons aviation service sector progress to put into place all the tools, the site, the staff, and the means to go outside of the region and tender for other work. Certainly Mt Cooks ATR72’s have been hinted at on many occasions.

Work that ultimately will lead to the exciting possibility of crucial new job openings locally.

And in light of another Air NZ subsidiary in Blenheim, Safe Air, looking to dispense staff this month…………the situation in Nelson could well be headed for an upside.