We hit a big milestone last week in our final preparations for evening flights into Queenstown Airport. Following the recent completion of Airways' $1.65 million airfield lighting infrastructure project - part of a wider $19.6 million Queenstown Airport runway infrastructure upgrade - we've been carrying out extensive testing and calibrating of the new runway, taxiway, approach and apron lights.
On Wednesday 25 April, the big moment arrived when the full lighting system was switched on for the first time in darkness. It was quite a sight! And we caught it all on film... the runway lights can now be seen in full glory in the below video footage.
Beginning at dusk, this stunning footage shows the new runway, taxiway, approach and apron lights in use after dark for the first time while our flight inspection team carried out testing via helicopter.
Now the testing is in the hands of the airlines. Air New Zealand operated its first evening test flight into Queenstown on Saturday night, in preparation for scheduled commercial services starting next month. When its first commercial evening flight touches down on the runway at 6.15pm on 23 May, it will certainly be a moment to celebrate - for Airways, Queenstown Airport and the many other organisations and contractors who have made this happen.