Fall is traditionally seen as a time of change – and that’s certainly the case at Nanaimo Airport.
The Central Island’s airport of choice will soon install new lighting on its apron, where planes park. The work is needed before ground can be broken early next year on a multi-million-dollar expansion project.
New floodlights will go up in the coming weeks. The upgrade helps clear the way for expansion of the Air Terminal Building. The extra square footage will shift the building’s footprint towards the apron.
A bigger terminal for passengers is needed due to record passenger numbers. The airport forecasts 365,000 people will go through its gates this year- the equivalent of every person in the Regional District of Nanaimo taking more than two flights.
The passenger numbers also puts the airport 10 years ahead of projections.
The 20-year terminal building expansion kicks off with phase one that is funded in part by a $7.46 million Building Canada Fund investment.
Phase 1 includes:
an expanded passenger departure lounge
more room for baggage to be processed
a larger security area so checked bags can be screened separately from passengers
Nanaimo Airport Commission is currently working with an architect team to confirm the building plans. After a contractor is chosen, construction crews are expected to be on site early next year.
Careful planning by the commission will ensure passenger safety and comfort is maintained throughout the project.
Expanding the terminal building fulfills three of the commission’s critical priorities:
Regional economic development
Economic stimulus through infrastructure construction
Meeting escalating demand for air service through the next decade
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