The future at Nanaimo Airport is becoming clearer by the day, thanks to progress on a $15-million Air Terminal Building expansion.
Construction activity that began this spring is already transforming the site. With foundation work completed, structural steel will now be erected. By Christmas, airport users will be able to see the outlines of the expansion, which will enlarge the security area for faster baggage screening and double the number of seats in the departure lounge for comfort and convenience.
“We’re very happy to be on schedule,” says Nanaimo Airport CEO Mike Hooper. “This is one of the largest construction projects in the region and despite normal logistical challenges it is going quite smoothly.”
He credits months of planning and careful project management for minimizing the impact of the expansion on airport operations. “We’ve made customer service a priority,” Hooper says. “We’re doing everything we can to ensure the airport experience meets expectations, and we appreciate the support and patience we’ve received from our customers.”
Once the steel work is done, crews will focus on exterior work for the building: cladding, glass and roofing. Completion is anticipated by January 2020. The expanded terminal will have approximately 14,000 more sq. ft. It’s currently 23,680 sq. ft.
The federal and provincial governments each invested $2.48 million in the project from the New Building Canada Fund – Small Communities Fund Program. The B.C. Airport Assistance Program invested $150,000 and Nanaimo Airport Commission covers the remainder
“This is another example of how Nanaimo Airport helps drive the Central Island economy,” Hooper says. “We’re bringing millions of dollars into the region and creating jobs that support local families.”
Island-based project manager Durwest Construction Management oversees many local trades contractors and suppliers. Nanaimo’s Checkwitch Poiron Architects, for example, is on the design team. And local firms McCallan Construction Survey, Graf Excavating, Island Overhead Doors, Flynn Canada, Archie Johnstone Plumbing, Houle Electric, Holdfast Metalworks, and Vescon Construction have all been contracted.
By 2021 the airport is forecast to generate $358 million in annual economic impact for the region and support more than 2,000 direct and indirect jobs.