Two new airport contribution funding programs were announced by the federal Ministry of Transportation on May 11, which will assist airports such as Prince Rupert Regional Airport (YPR) with economic recovery after financial loss from COVID-19.
The $65 million Airport Relief Fund (ARF) is a new program targeting Canadian airports to help maintain operations. The Airport Critical Infrastructure Program (ACIP) is to financially assist Canada’s larger airports with investment from the $490 million fund for use on infrastructure to safety, security or connectivity, a media release stated.
In addition to launching these two new funding programs, Omar Alghabra the Minister of Transport announced that Transport Canada’s Airports Capital Assistance Program (ACAP) will receive a funding top-up of $186 million over two years. The ACAP is an existing contribution funding program that provides financial assistance to Canada’s local and regional airports for safety-related infrastructure projects and equipment purchases.
“The federal program is much like the provincial initiative, it is applicable to all airports, so YPR would be eligible for the assistance,” Rick Leach, manager of YPR said.
“Airports provide the requested data which centres around lost revenue due to the downturn of commercial service, employment reductions, and economic impact to the communities.”
Leach said the local airport is still on track for flights to resume on June 23 with three flights a week in and out of the city until Aug. 1, when flights will be scheduled daily.
“I’m told that demand has not materialized yet due to the last Covid wave which pushed the start up,” he said.
“This is not ideal for a restart, and is also problematic as current bookings are going to flights out of YXT [Terrace] and this does not reflect this demand originating from the YPR market”
“We will continue to persevere,” Leach said.
K-J Millar | Journalist
Send K-J email
Like the The Northern View on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter