The Province is helping communities bring crucial improvements to regional airports with a boost in funding as part of B.C.’s COVID-19 economic recovery plan and B.C. Air Access Program grants.
The $9.28 million will enhance local airport infrastructure with initiatives like upgraded taxi lanes, new airside paving and green building projects.
With severe impacts on travel due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Province partnered with 27 regional airports and the federal government to develop a co-ordinated approach to support the sector. Servicing critical routes for local air travel, the 27 capital projects are part of a strong path to economic recovery.
“We know the pandemic has caused financial stress for many industries and significantly impacted our aviation sector throughout B.C., including our community airports,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “But we’re also looking to better days ahead, post-pandemic. That’s why we’re taking action to support communities with important infrastructure upgrades so we can boost jobs, tourism and trade that will give us a head start with B.C.’s economic recovery.”
One airport in the Fraser Valley will receive $438,075 in funding for upgrades:
- Abbotsford International Airport
The B.C. Air Access Program, now in its seventh year, is a cost-share program that provides funding to assist communities with improvements to their airport infrastructure that would otherwise be difficult or impossible to achieve. This can include funds to support safety improvements, increase economic opportunities and address environmental concerns.
“This pandemic has caused many challenges for our communities, and funding like this can start the road to economic recovery ,” said Pam Alexis, MLA for Abbotsford-Mission. “Airside paving and green initiatives at Abbotsford International Airport will not only make travel safer but will help boost trade and bring tourism to the area once it’s safe to do so.”
B.C. has more than 300 public airports, heliports and water aerodromes. Through the grant program, government has committed over $32.5 million to 51 airports since 2017. Applicants are assessed based on need, safety, environmental improvements and essential access.
“We are grateful to the Province of B.C. for its continued support of our community through this funding,” said Henry Braun, mayor of Abbotsford. “For the Abbotsford International Airport, this funding allows our partners to accomplish essential paving and green initiatives they wouldn’t be able to do otherwise, and this is a great example of the kinds of supports we need from our government to help us all move forward again.”
This funding is in addition to the Province’s recent announcement of $16.5 million for airports that provide medical evacuation services, to help maintain their operations.
For more information on the program and recipients, visit: https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/transportation/funding-engagement-permits/funding-grants/aviation-infrastructure-funding
StrongerBC: BC’s Economic Recovery Plan: https://strongerbc.gov.bc.ca/
The full list of this year’s grant recipients can be found here: https://news.gov.bc.ca/files/BG_RegionalAirports.pdf