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May 16, 2008 | General

Effective Saturday June 1, all scheduled air passenger traffic arriving and departing from Edmonton will do so at the Edmonton International Airport.

The final passenger flight will use the Municipal Airport at 10:55 PM on Friday May 31. The first passenger flights starting at 7:00 AM Saturday morning will operate from the International.

The voters of Edmonton decided on October 16, 1995 to consolidate all scheduled passenger air traffic at the International Airport. The Municipal Airport was subsequently leased to Edmonton Airports for 56 years to develop as a centre of excellence for general aviation, including private and corporate aircraft, medevac, training, aerospace, industrial and military uses. On June 20, the name will be officially changed to Edmonton City Centre Airport to better reflect its new role.

The International Airport has undergone approximately $15 million in renovations to prepare for the arrival of the passengers from the Municipal Airport. Consolidation will approximately double the number of planes which use that airport from about 90 to about 180 on an average day. Passenger volumes are expected to increase from approximately two million annually to approximately three million annually.

Improvements to ground transportation are being planned and implemented, including a more frequent Airporter shuttle bus, expanded parking, improvements to signage, synchronization of traffic lights on Calgary Trail, and a higher quality taxi service. Longer term improvements to ground transportation could include a premium helicopter service, train service, and highway improvements including extensions and overpasses.

Edmonton Airports also plans to open a downtown terminal in the fall of 1996, which will initially provide connections between airport transportation and intra-city transportation, a waiting area, and retail outlets. In due course, Edmonton Airports also expects to provide a check-in and baggage handling service at the downtown terminal.

“We believe consolidation will allow us to attract better domestic, transborder and international service for Edmontonians,” said Scott Clements, President and CEO of Edmonton Airports. “At the same time, we are fully committed to both preserving the significant aviation heritage of the City Centre Airport, and developing a bright future for that facility as a centre of excellence for general aviation.”