Phase Two of Terrace-Kitimat Airport Terminal Expansion Project Now Complete

The Terminal Expansion project at the Northwest Regional Airport marked an important milestone this afternoon.

Although newly-elected MLA Ellis Ross was not able to attend as originally scheduled, officials celebrated the completion of Phase Two of the project -- an improvement that officials say passengers will notice.

[Photo at right:  Airport manager Carman Hendry, Terrace Mayor Carol Leclerc, Terrace-Kitimat Airport Society President Bill Hickman and young helper cut ribbon]

The four-phase expansion project has been underway for almost three years --- and completion of Phase two marks the half-way point of the project.

Thursday's milestone involves the opening of the Departures Terminal check-in area -- and Airport manager Carman Hendry says it'll provide an easier and more comfortable checkin for the travelling public.

"When people come in there will be more room to move in the check-in area, they won't be going down my hallway anymore -- also it'll be quicker for security because when you check your bag, you'll be able to have it screened immediately right here beside the checkin counters, and it'll be quicker traversing through the pre-board screening where you just go yourself with your carry-on," which he said will double the capacity of passenger check-in.

The newly-expanded departures terminal is equipped with state-of-the-art services, such as heating and ventilation sensors and lots of natural light.

Terrace Mayor Carol Leclerc says the expansion of the airport is important for the Terrace-Kitimat area, as it looks ahead to the future, whether or not the liquefied natural gas industry proceeds, although she still has faith that it will.

"Economic growth is a huge driver for our economy and having the airport here, a large airport, a modern airport, an airport with a 75-hundred foot runway, with the instrument landing, with the new lights that they put out for landing, it's just puts that confidence to people that may not know about the northwest, how well our infrastructure is to support their needs," she said.

The next phases involve expanding the security holding room, which should be completed by next February, and expanding the vehicle parking area. 

There will also be runway resurfacing.

The four-phase Airport Terminal Expansion project was made possible by funding from the federal government's Build Canada Program, the provincial government's BC Airport Access Plan and the Northern Development Initiative Trust.