Friday, February 24, 2012

Jack Garland Airport getting snow removal equipment

Jack Garland Airport is getting more than $500,000 in federal funding to purchase replacement snow removal equipment and runway lighting.

The funding, which was announced by Nipissing-Timiskaming MP Jay Aspin at a news conference at the airport Friday, will be used to purchase a snow blower vehicle and to install an omni directional approach lighting system on the main runway.

Airport manager Jack Santerre said the lion’s share of the funding will be used to replace an existing snow removal vehicle that’s more than 20 years old. He said the new lighting will improve runway safety and allow planes to land in less than ideal weather conditions.

Santerre said the new equipment is more efficient and will also help to reduce airport operating costs.

“North Bay has made a conscious decision to create jobs and grow its economy though the creation of the airport business park,” said Aspin. “Our government is supporting the city wholeheartedly in the effort. This funding is the third in a series of federal investments which total $6 million and will ensure the North Bay airport has the infrastructure required to create jobs and growth.”

The federal government has previously provided the airport with $3.5 million to resurface the main runway and $2 million to help develop its industrial park. The latest funding comes from the government’s Airport Capital Assistance Program.

Mayor Al McDonald, who was on hand for the announcement, welcomed the funding, saying it will aid in the continuing expansion of the airport.

In addition, McDonald said the city will make use of the airport’s old snow blower vehicle, particularly in areas where large amounts of snow need to be cleared.

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