Trail moves ahead with airport plans

With the clock ticking for a new terminal at the Trail airport, the city is making serious headway toward getting the project underway.

After receiving provincial grant money for a new airport terminal

After receiving provincial grant money for a new airport terminal

With the clock ticking for a new terminal at the Trail airport, the city is making serious headway toward getting the project underway.

The reason for no delays is simple the city has just over one year to use the $1.18 million the province recently granted Trail through the BC Air Access program, specifically for new terminal construction.

“We have to have essential completion of the project by September 2017,” explains Mayor Mike Martin. “So we are moving very fast right now because all we had was early feasibility level drawings, cost estimates and project schedule.”

Council met for a special governance meeting on Wednesday and awarded contracts to two local consulting companies for assistance with the project’s development and construction as well as civil works.

“Time is of the essence for this project,” Chief Administrative Officer David Perehudoff advised council. “The provincial grant conditions indicate that the project must be substantially complete next year. In this respect, moving forward as quickly as possible is of critical importance if this aggressive schedule is to be met.”

The Trail office of TRUE Engineering was awarded a $90,950 contact for civil works, including water, septic sewer. The design element and contract administration agreement, totalling $80,000, was awarded to Stanley Office of Architecture (SOA) out of Nelson.

Besides project planning, day to day operations of the Trail Regional Airport have also been on council’s radar.

Following the resignation of airport manager Don Goulard in late spring, the city was undergoing a review of management structure so council could decide if the position should be filled status quo or if the job could evolve into something a little different.

During the interim, Robert Baker, deputy director of parks and recreation, was assigned as airport manager.

Martin says Baker fulfilled the role so well that last week council appointed him into the position permanently.

“Now he wears two hats,” said Martin. “We are very pleased with the way Robert has integrated himself into that role and we feel very secure going forward with the oversight that he will provide on a day to day basis,” he added. “So as far as the operation of the airport goes, it’s well in hand and we’ve got a solid management structure.”

With terminal plans in place and solid management, there’s one aspect the city is currently seeking help with the technical end of operation.

Trail is looking to hire an airport project specialist, which for now, is a temporary position.

“In parallel with our decision (about) the airport manager, we are advertising for an airport project specialist to undertake some technical work that we really need to have done,” Martin said. “We need some technical expertise to help us primarily with documentation that is required as part of ongoing operation of the airport.”