With no commercial flights for the foreseeable future, the City of Quesnel is taking a proactive approach to keep the airport viable.
Mayor Bob Simpson…
“Staff were directed by Council in the spring to reduce operating costs wherever possible and more recently staff were directed to work closely with our Economic Development department to attract more air traffic and new business opportunities to the airport.”
Airport and Transit Manager John Pucek talks about some of the things that have been happening…
“Fuel sales remained strong in August, the forestry firebase has doubled in size this year, and we have seen a substantial increase in private and chartar flights.”
Pucek says they still have helicopter traffic, fisheries flights and Air Ambulance services.
Central Mountain Air has told the city that flights aren’t expected to resume at the Quesnel Airport until at least February.
Pucek says they are now focusing their efforts on what is called general aviation…
“Airports can make money without having scheduled air, there are a number of airports like that. Pitt Meadows for example, Vernon, that’s what our focus is right now is how do we attract economic opportunity for Quesnel at the airport without having scheduled air traffic.”
Pucek says the city will be scaling back during the winter however, as he says there are simply just fewer chartered flights during that time, so it doesn’t make sense to be open from 6 am until 10 pm.