Tourism boost expected from $5.5M upgrade to Kelowna airport private aircraft services | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source
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Kelowna News

Tourism boost expected from $5.5M upgrade to Kelowna airport private aircraft services

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Image Credit: ADOBE STOCK

A $5.5 million capital project planned for Kelowna International Airport in 2022 is the first major expansion of general aviation services in almost 20 years and is expected attract more tourists to the region.

The idea for the project came from local engineer and Kelowna Flying Club member Richard Visscher and will increase parking and hangers for private aircraft by 64 per cent, according to a Kelowna Flying Club press release.

“We’ll increase the number of parking slots from 44 to 88, all of them paved, 42 will be under roof, with the remaining 46 available for parking both resident and itinerant aircraft,” Visscher said in the release.

The airport and the flying club has signed a three-year sublease that will allow the club and its members to invest over $5 million worth of improvements to the 5.5-acre general aviation parking area along Airport Way.

READ MORE: International flights set to resume at Kelowna airport

“This is the first major expansion of services available to general aviation at YLW in almost 20 years,” flying club president Paul Kos said in the release.

The club will be supplying parking, hangarage and aviation fuel services for local pilots, and those who fly into the Okanagan from across Canada and the U.S.

“We could not have brought this project to fruition without the close support and encouragement of YLW management,” club director Joe Rogers said in the release. “We are looking forward to continuing our close working relationships with YLW management during the construction phase early next year, and thereafter when the club assumes responsibility for operating these expanded services to general aviation.”

The project is expected to generate over $150 million in financial benefits to the airport over the next 30 years while creating additional jobs.

The club operates as a not-for-profit, and all earnings will be used to benefit the general aviation community, with an emphasis on encouraging young people into aviation.


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