Your flights to and from the Yellowknife Airport will soon be that much safer thanks to funding from both the federal and territorial governments. On February 10th, The Federal Government, represented by The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue and Member of Parliament for Gaspesie announced an investment of $2,550,887 towards the local airport. The Honourable Wally Schumann then announced that GNWT will be adding to the Feds investment. NWT will invest 15% of the Federal Government’s investment making the total investment roughly $3 million.

The investments will be used towards installing elevated high-intensity LED edge and threshold lights and wind direction indicators on runway 16-34. They will also be installing high-intensity lights on the approach of runway 34. The Government of Canada says that well maintained lighting systems ensure safe usage by aircraft, passengers and crews and help protect costly airport safety assets such as snow clearing equipment and aircraft rescue and firefighting vehicles, during airport operations. The whole project is expected to take 2 years to complete.

The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier says the Yellowknife Airport is an important hub for residents and businesses in the region.

“This investment will help the airport ensure continued safe operations for passengers, flight crews and employees, who rely on this airport as it supports the regional economy and its social development.”

NWT MP Michael McLeod says as the member of Parliament for the NWT, he knows first-hand how much of a lifeline local airports are for remote communities.

“Not only for business purpose, but also for access to services like specialized and emergency medical care in larger centers. This project at the Yellowknife Airport will ensure safer and more reliable connectivity for Northerners.”

The federal funding comes from the Transport Canada’s Airports Capital Assistance Program (ACAP). Airports around Canada have to apply for funding from the program. This is not the first time the airport in Yellowknife has received funding from the program. One of the dividends of the program was a firetruck in which they were able to show off at the announcement. The truck has been in use for roughly a year now by the airport. The program has invested more than $882.7 million for 948 projects at 186 airports across the country. To date, the Yellowknife Airport has received more than $9.6 million in ACAP funding for six safety projects.

The Honourable Wally Schumann says The Government of the Northwest Territories remains committed to improving airport infrastructure, operations and safety by working and strengthening connections with public and private sector partners in transportation infrastructure.

“Today’s funding announcement will result in lower energy costs, improving visibility and reduce costs related to maintenance and repair. These important improvements will build on the safety of NWT visitors and residents but also support economic opportunities through the central hub of the NWT airport system and increase traveler confidence.

MP Michael McLeod, The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier and The Honourable Wally Schumann standing in front of the airport’s fire truck.