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Airspace Protection

To ensure the safety, efficiency and regularity of existing and future air transport operations at major Australian Airports, the Airports (Protection of Airspace) Regulations (APARs) were formed, setting the framework for the definition and declaration of airspace requiring protection, and also the processes required for the assessment of proposals involving intrusion into that airspace – deemed “Controlled Activities”.


The APARs involve aspects of land use planning and development control needed to be managed cooperatively with State and Local Government authorities. The APARs are administered by the Commonwealth Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development.

The APARs aim to ensure that:


  • The airspace which aircraft operate in when under Instrument Meteorological Conditions is obstacle-free with minimum obstacle clearances maintained consistent with relevant international and national aviation standards;
  • The Airspace which aircraft operate in when under Visual Meteorological Conditions is generally obstacle-free, and only in certain circumstances are objects permitted to intrude into that component of an airport’s prescribed airspace following a detailed hazard determination, potentially resulting in hazard identification through markings and lighting to the object or structure;
  • Assessments are applied to facilities that may emit efflux levels exceeding 4.3m/sec for their impact on the safety of aviation operations;
  • Radar, aviation navigation systems and critical airfield lighting systems have adequate protection zones and are able to operate without interference;
  • A robust assessment regime is established for proposed structures and developments (Controlled Activities) that may impact an Airport’s airspace; and
  • Penalty provisions exist for activities not conducted in accordance with the requirements of the APARs.


Brisbane Airport Corporation, as the operator of Brisbane Airport is required to develop an airspace definition consistent with appropriate standards and operational procedures – current and future, referring that airspace definition to Airservices Australia – the Air Navigation Services Provider for all Australian Airspace, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority – the National Safety and Standards Regulator, and following confirmation of content completeness and technical accuracy by those Agencies, the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development for endorsement and Gazettal.

The prescribed airspace for Brisbane Airport includes the following surfaces:


  • The Obstacle Limitation Surface (OLS) and Procedures for Air Navigational Services—Aircraft Operations (PANS-OPS) and the airspace above those surfaces for existing and future aircraft operations arriving, departing and manoeuvring in the vicinity of Brisbane Airport;
  • Radar Terrain Clearance Chart surfaces; and
  • Surfaces associated with Radar systems, aviation navigational aids and airfield major lighting installations.


The Airspace for Brisbane Airport was first declared in 2009, revised in 2013 and most recently a minor update finalised by the Department of Infrastructure and Regional Development on 14 July 2017.The following charts depicting the current Prescribed Airspace for Brisbane Airport are included for download here:


Please be aware that areas of Brisbane and South East Queensland may be impacted by additional airspace surfaces associated with other airports in the region.

Brisbane Airport background