Airport land creates new opportunities for growth

4 May 2017

  • New land use plan creates new employment opportunities. Bringing new businesses here, and helping existing ones expand. Diversifying the regional economy. Those are just some of the benefits of land development at the Nanaimo Airport.

    In 2015, the Nanaimo Airport Commission (NAC) adopted a Land Use Plan which established a long-term vision for the 50 hectares of developable land. The first phase of that plan identified six lots along the taxiway as part of the YCD Aviation Gateway project in partnership with Executive Flight Centre Developments. This new focus on development has paid off.

    Whitehorse based Alkan Air signed a long-term lease in late 2016 for one of the available air-side lots. The company recently finished building its new hangar there, with room for three aircraft configured full time for medical air transportation.

    Alkan crews are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for flights throughout the Yukon, Northern B.C. and to major centres in Southern Canada. Crews also assist in remote medical evacuation.

    Federal Express also seized the opportunity to operate from YCD. Shortly after expanding services to Nanaimo, they needed more space to help its existing business keep up with growing customer demand. In 2015 they moved into a larger hangar onsite which serves as the hub for the courier’s local cargo and shipping operations.

    The two businesses are a perfect fit for Nanaimo Airport Commission’s development plan. They’re both in the aviation sector. They both complement the airport’s existing business partners. And they’re both providing benefit to the region and its economy.

    Investors and tenants for the remaining available land will be carefully chosen to ensure they meet similar criteria.

    Development will take place in phases and under strict guidelines. The first phase offers significant areas of developable land fronting both the main airport roadway and the primary taxiway.

    Land development and other commercial activities helps support the airport’s long-term growth and financial sustainability. They also help boost the regional economy.