Rocky man with spaceport plan could fly north with proposal

I WILL FLY: Spaceport Australia founder John Moody gets set to dine at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. He wants to build a spaceport in Rockhampton.
I WILL FLY: Spaceport Australia founder John Moody gets set to dine at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles. He wants to build a spaceport in Rockhampton. Contributed

THE man with the spaceport plan for Rockhampton is threatening to take his proposals to Townsville if he doesn't get much local interest.

Former Rockhampton man John Moody earlier this month proposed to build a $45 million spaceport, which could horizontally launch spacecrafts like the XCOR Lynx from Rockhampton Airport.

Mr Moody, who now lives in Brisbane, told The Morning Bulletin space experts had flagged the city as one of the most ideal locations in Australia for a spacecraft terminal.

He also proposed a 457m-extension of the existing runway, which accounted for a large portion of the cost.

However after a recent trip to the United States Mr Moody discovered he could cut the cost of the proposed spaceport to almost a quarter of the original at $12.5 million.

He said after he spoke with USA spacecraft industry leaders, including XCOR president Andrew Nelson, he realised he didn't need to extend the existing runway as he first thought.

When he returned from the USA, Mr Moody met with state government chief economist Steve Kanowski and State Development, Infrastructure and Planning advisor Greg Fahey.

He claimed they said to him "run with it, it's a fantastic idea... now is the time to build the spaceport".

Since his proposal was made public earlier this month, Mr Moody said he hardly had any support from Rockhampton.

That included support from Rockhampton Regional Council.

Mr Moody said he briefly spoke with Councillor Neil Fisher but had not heard back from anyone since.

"I'm absolutely peeved that no one has been in touch with me... space experts have said to me, look, why don't you offer the proposal to Townsville.

"That's what I might do if I can't get the backing for this proposal."

Previously Cr Fisher said there were still major procedures to factor in like feasibility, and more importantly public consultation, before anything went ahead.

However Cr Fisher said he was not going to road block the idea. Yesterday The Morning Bulletin tried to contact Cr Fisher several times for comment but was unable to reach him.

Topics:  rockhampton airport

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