The Australian government expects to receive a report on potential sites for a second airport in Sydney in the second half of this year, as the city's airport steadily becomes more congested.
A committee chaired by government officials is carrying out the study, commissioned by the Australian federal government and New South Wales government, says transport minister Anthony Albanese.
"What the committee has done is a series of economic modelling, and that modelling shows that a second airport for Sydney will be required sooner rather than later," he adds. He did not give a timeline for when the authorities plan to make a decision on the location of a second airport.
Albanese says the peak period at Sydney Airport "is being pushed out", with requests for slots at the airport exceeding the cap of 80 movements per hour.
"Whereas it [the peak period] used to be just between 07:00hr and about 08:30hr, that is now growing as time goes on," says Albanese.
The minister, who has lobbied for years for a second airport in Sydney, says there will be no extra capacity for flights at the airport. "On my watch, there will be no shift in the curfew or the cap on movements at Sydney Airport," he says.
The committee could recommend one site for a second airport in Sydney or a few, says Albanese.
"They have been given very wide terms of reference... they're also looking at what are the land transport links, that is road and rail links to any particular site," he adds.