Airfield Improvements Celebrated

Saint John, NB – The Saint John Airport hosted dignitaries and members of the local community today at an event to celebrate the successful conclusion of its airfield modernization project and official reopening of its primary runway.

“Today comes after many years of planning, and the vision and support of many elected officials, business and community leaders, former Airport CEOs, past board chairs and directors,” remarked President and CEO Derrick Stanford. “With today’s grand re-opening, I can now say that Saint John is home to the most modern airfield in Atlantic Canada for an airport of our size.”

The airfield modernization project comprised the complete rehabilitation of the airport’s two runways and the addition of centreline lighting on the primary runway to improve accessibility for arriving and departing aircraft. It also included:

  • The installation of Runway End Safety Areas (RESAs), which will soon be mandated for all airports in Canada with more than 325,000 passengers per year.
  • The replacement of all airfield lighting with high intensity and energy efficient LED lighting – which consumes less power and is more environmentally friendly.

The project began in 2018 and was completed at the end of October, a few weeks ahead of schedule. Commercial flights began to use the new and improved runway as of Tuesday, October 29.

“These critical safety-related improvements ensure we comply with the latest airport design standards. The proactive addition of the soon-to-be mandated RESAs mean we will be first in the country, something that’s unprecedented for an airport of our size,” Stanford added. “Overall, the project will lessen our energy use and the cost of annual routine maintenance going forward, allowing us to realize our passenger growth goals and remain a key economic driver for the region.”

The project was made possible, in part, thanks to a $10 million investment made by Transport Canada’s National Trade Corridors Fund. The Government of Canada’s contribution represented the first time the Saint John Airport was eligible for federal funding since the country’s airports were privatized in 1999.

In addition to the federal investment, the Government of New Brunswick contributed $4 million and the Saint John Airport invested more than $6 million, for a total project cost of $20.4 million.

“On behalf of our board of directors, the whole YSJ team and the entire community, we’d like to thank the Governments of Canada and New Brunswick for recognizing the critical importance of our modernization project to the continued growth of our region,” Stanford said.

The Saint John Airport broke all previous traffic records in 2018 with 282,217 travellers flying via YSJ, representing a seven per cent increase over 2017.


About the Saint John Airport

The Saint John Airport Inc. is a community based, not-for-profit corporation serving the air travel needs of residents of southwestern New Brunswick. The airport (YSJ) is a key element in the economic and social development of the Greater Saint John region with an economic impact estimated at $68.7 million with more than 480 jobs created directly and indirectly. The Saint John Airport reinvests all profits back into the airport and local communities.

For more information, contact:
Derrick Stanford
President and CEO
(506) 644-8607

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