Cairns Airport in Australia has revealed plans to upgrade its domestic terminal in a bid to accommodate more passengers while offering improved travel experience.

Traffic through the domestic terminal is expected to increase by 40% to approximately six million travellers per annum over the next 10 years.

The upgrade work, estimated to cost A$55m ($41m), will involve the expansion of the departures hall to 10,000m². The extended space will provide additional seating and improve the layout for travellers’ convenience.

To accommodate dining and retail outlets, the terminal will also create an additional 2,000m² of space.

“With this redevelopment, we are aiming to take customer experience to new heights from touch down to take off. We want our customers to arrive excited and depart delighted.”

Cairns Airport CEO Norris Carter said: “In the last year we’ve announced new international flights and an upgrade of the food and beverage options in the international terminal. Now it’s the domestic terminal’s turn.

“With this redevelopment, we are aiming to take customer experience to new heights from touch down to take off. We want our customers to arrive excited and depart delighted.”

During the construction phase, the project is anticipated to create over 300 jobs. An additional 150 permanent jobs are expected to be created following the completion of the project.

Cairns Airport COO Kate McCreery-Carr said that the redevelopment will lower congestion by spreading boarding gates throughout the terminal.

“The improved layout will make a significant difference at peak times when we see high volume passenger flow. Boarding queues will be reduced and this will promote a more relaxed environment for passengers,” McCreery-Carr noted.

The overhaul is scheduled to start in August this year and be completed in 2020.