Expansion, bus service, and a record year at Nanaimo Airport

1 February 2020

  • Fresh off another record-setting year, Nanaimo Airport (YCD) opens 2020 with even more milestones.

    A multi-million-dollar Air Terminal Building expansion has been completed. It came in ahead of schedule and under budget. The expansion adds 14,000 square feet for passenger convenience. It’s needed to meet increased demand.

    It also provides a larger security area that will be able to serve 1,000 people per hour in the future. Our passengers can move through security screening and the baggage check far faster. Before the expansion, fewer than 200 people per hour could move through the line. Screening is the responsibility of the Canadian Air Transport Security Authority.

    A ribbon cutting ceremony later this month will officially open the expanded terminal building space.

    Travellers also benefit from BC Transit’s new airport bus service. It connects us and the Cassidy community to downtown Nanaimo. Launched in January, the service provides five buses per day from early morning to early evening. Travellers now have even more transportation options to and from the Central Island’s airport of choice.

    The service enhancements all fit into our plan for continuous improvement. The plan helps us keep up with record demand that is far ahead of projections.

    Some 490,000 people moved through our gates in 2019. It was the 11th record-breaking year in a row as YCD continues to be one of B.C.’s fastest growing airports of its size. A seasonal flight to Toronto and additional connecting flights to travel hubs in Vancouver and Calgary helped pushed passenger numbers to the new high.

    Nanaimo is now Vancouver Island’s second busiest airport. Passenger volume is about a decade ahead of forecasts. And airport CEO and President Mike Hooper expects the trend to continue.

    “We have a fabulous foundation for growth of passenger service, aerospace development, cargo development and ground side developments,” he says.

    Nanaimo Airport provides 2,700 direct and indirect jobs that support Central Island families. We’re a major economic driver for the region too. We generated an estimated $486 million in economic impact in 2019.