The need for a second general aviation airport to complement Jandakot is now being studied by the State Government.
Transport Minister Pam Beggs said the aerospace industry had enormous export potential and it was vital there was adequate airport infrastructure to support that development.
"The State Government recognises the importance of Jandakot as it is one of the key pieces of transport infrastructure in the State," Mrs Beggs said.
"Its continued operation is essential to commercial operators in the general aviation sector. It is important as a pilot training facility and it also caters for Perth's growing demand for recreational flying."
Mrs Beggs said there were around 350,000 take-offs and landings at Jandakot each year. The airport's capacity was for around 550,000 aircraft movements.
"It seems inevitable that some time within the next 20 years Jandakot's capacity will not be sufficient to cater for the needs of general aviation and recreational flying," she said.
"Consequently the Government has set up the study to look at issues such as when and where a second airport should be built."
The potential for aerospace development had been identified in the Government's WA Advantage and Into Asia strategy.
"The strategy shows that Western Australia has a great opportunity to develop exports in the aerospace field," Mrs Beggs said.
These exports include pilot training, air navigation and traffic control training, aircraft engineering and aviation electronics.
General public interest in flying training and flying for pleasure continue to grow despite the recession. As well, commercial aviation is growing.
Mrs Beggs said the study would involve interest groups and the general community.
Director-General of Transport Stuart Hicks would chair a steering committee to oversee the study. Other members included David Hatt of the Department of Planning and Urban Development, Lew Oakes, president of the Royal Aero Club of WA and Trades and Labour Council secretary Rob Meecham.
A working group comprising representatives from the Civil Aviation Authority, the RAAF, the Federal Airports Corporation, the Commonwealth Department of Transport and Communications and the WA Municipal Association, also had been formed. The Environmental Protection Authority would advise the group throughout the study.
Its main objectives are to report on:
· The need for a second general aviation aerodrome for the Perth region within the next 20 years.
· The location of the second aerodrome.
· The need to reserve a site for future development of such a facility.
The study, expected to take 18 months, would cover projected future demand for general aviation, an assessment of defence considerations, safety issues and the social and environmental implications of a second general aviation facility.