Bold, expanded airport terminal welcomes passengers

By March 1, 2020 March 9th, 2020 Airport Improvements

Bold, bright and beautiful.

That’s a fitting description for Nanaimo Airport’s Terminal Building expansion, which officially opened in late February. It’s also an apt description for the airport’s future.

The new $14.2-million wing was completed ahead of schedule and under budget.

Passengers now enjoy an additional 14,000 sq. ft. of modern, airy comfort. The glass walls allow in a flood of natural light while overlooking the runway and the trees and mountains beyond. New comfortable seating provides spacious leg room as well as charging stations for electronic devices. Seating capacity has increased to more than 300, from 140, in the new boarding lounge.

“It’s a great design. It’s bold and speaks to who we are,” says Dave Witty, chair of the Nanaimo Airport Commission’s building committee. “The whole idea was to create a place of comfort for people as they travel.”

The project was made possible with the support of the Building Fund Canada -Small Communities Fund. Infrastructure Canada and the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure each invested $2.5 million. Nanaimo Airport Commission invested $9.2 million.

The striking architecture was a collaboration between Office of McFarlane Biggar and the Nanaimo office of Checkwitch Poiron Architects. Island-based Durwest Construction Management managed the project. The company oversaw many local firms and contractors since construction began in 2018

“We’re enhancing the travel experience for the hundreds of thousands of people who make us their airport of choice,” says airport President and CEO Mike Hooper. “At the same time, we’re bringing many other benefits to our communities. Nanaimo Airport is a major economic driver on Vancouver Island and this investment has had a huge impact in our region. We’re the catalyst for thousands of jobs that support Central Island families. And investing in the terminal building helps us attract even more routes to serve the air transportation needs of our region today and for the next generation.”