Economic impact soars at YLW

YLW continues to generate business, tourism and air access benefits for the region

Kelowna International Airport is a significant community asset for the Okanagan Valley.

With more than 1.7 million passengers served in 2016, an economic impact of 4,545 jobs and $789 million in total economic output to B.C., YLW continues to generate business, tourism and air access benefits for the region.

“Passenger volumes are expected to continue growing over the next 20 years reaching 3.5 million passengers, and annual aircraft movements are forecast to increase to 100,000 per year by 2045,” said Sam Samaddar, airport director.

“This growth means YLW will need to continue expanding and building infrastructure for the foreseeable future.”

A number of capital projects will be continued from last year, including the new outbound baggage hall, apron one rehabilitation and lighting improvements, departures lounge kitchen upgrades, airfield lighting conversion, combined operations building expansion planning, and new navigational aids for runway 34 and the runway end safety area.

“Projects like these allow for increased efficiency, safer operations and faster service here at YLW,” said Ed Stephens, senior manager of airport development.

In 2017 and 2018, YLW will also work on the preliminary design for 17 projects in the new airport improvement fee program, including a terminal and apron expansion, new east taxiway, self-serve baggage drop and new loading bridges.

March was YLW’s busiest month ever with 173,504 passengers through the doors. That’s up 14.2 per cent since 2016.

YLW and its nine airline partners offer direct flights to 17 scheduled and seasonal destinations.