Airservices is Australia's air navigation service provider - we provide air traffic control, aviation rescue and fire fighting and air navigation services.

Melbourne Airport Runway Mode and Flight Path Changes

22 March 2019

Feedback has now closed. For a summary of the feedback received on this change please see Summary of Feedback – Melbourne Airport Runway Mode and Flight Path Changes under Resources.

The proposal will proceed to implementation on 20 June 2019.

28 February 2019

Fact Sheets have been updated to clarify domestic and international aircraft usage of the proposed new runway mode.

25 February 2019

Melbourne Airport Runway Mode and Flight Path Changes

Airservices is proposing changes to how some runways (Runway 09 and Runway 16) are used for arrivals to Melbourne Airport, when certain wind conditions exist.

This is an Airservices initiated change to improve safety and efficiency at Melbourne Airport and is not part of the Melbourne Airport Runway Development Program.

Previous information identified that residents of Wollert may notice an increase in flights on existing flight paths when Runway 09 is in use. Further analysis of the proposed flight paths has revealed that this is not expected to be the case.

When will this change occur?

Implementation of the proposed change is planned for June 2019 (previously May 2019).

Why are the changes necessary?

The proposed changes will reduce delays to aircraft and passengers, and reduce the workload for air traffic controllers and pilots, particularly when there is holding in the air for arriving traffic into Melbourne. The proposed changes will improve safety and efficiency of operations at Melbourne Airport.

What is going to change?

Flights land and take off from different runways depending on wind, weather, operational requirements, emergencies and noise management.

Currently at Melbourne Airport, during periods of south/south easterly winds, the north-south runway (Runway 16) is used for both arrivals and departures. This is an example of what is called a runway ‘mode’. Runway modes are described in the Noise Abatement Procedures (NAPs) for Melbourne Airport.

During busy periods at Melbourne Airport, this existing runway mode may result in delays to flights on the ground and in the air, which can have flow-on impacts across the whole air traffic network.

Airservices is proposing to add a new runway mode to the NAPs to be used when there are south/south easterly winds.

In order for aircraft to land safely and efficiently on Runway 09, Airservices will also need to change some arrival flight paths to the north and northwest of Melbourne Airport. This will ensure that arriving aircraft remain separated from departing aircraft and can approach the airport in an efficient manner. These changes have been designed to be as close to existing flight paths as possible.

Existing runway modes and flight paths will continue to be used at Melbourne Airport, in other wind conditions.

The proposed new runway mode, with Runway 09 for arrivals, will not be used between 11:00pm-6:00am. However Runway 09 may be used during these times when it is the only suitable runway for operational reasons.

Where can I get more information?

For more information please see the Resources section below.

Airservices will be hosting ‘drop in’ consultation sessions with potentially affected communities between 7 and 9 March 2019:

Thursday 7 March 2019, 12:00pm to 6:00pm
Meeting Room 3
Hume Global Learning Centre – Craigieburn
75-95 Central Park Avenue, Craigieburn

Friday 8 March 2019, 12:00pm to 6:00pm
Gisborne Community Centre
Hamilton St, Gisborne

Saturday 9 March 2019, 11:00am to 3:00pm
Richards Training Room, Level 1
Melton Library and Learning Hub
31 McKenzie Street, Melton


Feedback can be provided:

  • In person at one of our consultation sessions
  • Via online form at:
  • Mail to: Feedback c/o Noise Complaints and Information Service, PO BOX 211 Mascot NSW 1460

For general information on flight path changes, contact the Noise Complaints and Information Service (NCIS) on:

  • 1800 802 584 (free call)
  • 131 450 (interpreter service)
  • interpreter-symbol-2



Consultation commenced on 15 January 2019. The feedback period has been extended and now closes on 12 March 2019 (previously 26 February 2019).

Previous Updates

15 January 2018

Melbourne Airport Runway Mode and Flight Path Changes

Airservices proposes to implement a mode change to the Melbourne Airport Noise Abatement Procedures (NAPs) in April 2019.

The proposed changes will ensure that airborne and ground delays are minimised during peak periods, by implementing a new mode of operation. This new mode will allow arriving aircraft to land on the east-west runway (Runway 09) and departing aircraft to track south on the north-south runway (Runway 16).

This new mode will be used when there are south or south easterly winds, especially during summer months.

The new mode will also require changes to flight paths so that Runway 09 can be used for arrivals.

For more information please see the Melbourne Airport Runway Mode and Flight Path Changes Fact Sheet under Resources.

Airservices will conduct on-site consultation sessions with affected communities in February.
Details of these sessions will be available soon.

Prior to the on-site consultation sessions, we will publish community specific fact sheets.

Feedback closes on 26 February 2019.