Sunday, February 3, 2008

Sydney Airport's "new" control tower

Well it was fairly new in the 1970s, anyway. Replacing the old tower near the intersection of the east-west and north-south runways, this "new" tower sat on the edge of Botany Bay, next to the Cook's River. It had the advantage of seeing to the end of the newly-extended north-south runway (which has a slight hill in the middle). Later replaced by a taller, more dramatic structure on the other side of the main runway when the parallel north-south runway was built.

It's worth noting that the Cook's River was diverted to make more room for these runways at Sydney, originally emptying into Botany Bay on the other side of the north-south runway. The current runways themselves were settled upon only in the 1950s, earlier grass and gravel strips having a more north-east/south-west orientation. One strip was actually crossed by a railway line (later diverted to the north), a DC-3 famously colliding with a train and illustrating the obvious dangers in that arrangement...

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