After landing a federal ACAP grant for $4.6 million, the runway at Trail Regional Airport will undergo an upgrade. (Sheri Regnier photo)

YZZ runway expansion underway

Trail Regional Airport (YZZ) landed a $4.6 million grant for runway rehabilitation.

Rehabilitation of the runway, taxiway and existing apron at the Trail Regional Airport (YZZ) will soon be underway thanks to $4.6 million in federal funding.

Thursday afternoon the city announced its successful application to Airport Capital Assistance Program (ACAP), which will fund re-surfacing of the current runway, not an extension.

“However there could well be an opportunity to integrate the existing run-offs into the runway and thereby achieve the additional length of some 300 to 500 feet,” Mayor Mike Martin told the Trail Times. “Which will provide for longer take-off and landing distances and allow for increased weight capacities for aircraft.

“This will be part of the overall evaluation once the resurfacing project commences.”

The Trail airport project was one of 34 applications approved by the Government of Canada program, as part of $41.7 million for new safety-related improvements in airports this year.

Design work is already underway, and construction is expected to begin later this summer.

“The City has hired both a Project Manager, WSP, and CIMA+ as the engineering firm to undertake the necessary detailed design work,” Martin confirmed. “The project should be tendered in July … construction to start in August or September and then take about eight weeks to complete.”

The YZZ Airside Pavement Rehabilitation Project will result in YZZ being one of the first airports in the country to be fully compliant with Transport Canada’s most recent airport regulations.

“The city continued to pursue the ACAP grant since the purchase of the airport from the Regional District of Kootenay Boundary in 2014,” the city stated Thursday.

Since Trail took ownership of the airport, investments in excess of $10 million have been made with grant funding of almost $6 million being received, in support of improving this key piece of transportation infrastructure.

“We are most appreciative of the tremendous support we received from elected federal representatives in advancing our application,” said Martin. “This major funding commitment recognizes the importance of YZZ providing reliable, convenient, affordable and safe air access into the Lower Columbia Region in support of residential, business, tourism and medical needs.”

The timing for the ACAP grant could not be better for YZZ.

“This significant investment by the federal government will improve air access for the Lower Columbia Region,” said Councillor Kevin Jolly, YZZ committee chair. “It also demonstrates our long-term revitalization transportation strategy for the area is sustainable as this project will occur at the same time as the construction of YZZ’s new terminal.”

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