Over 500 waterfront residents sign petition in favour of jets, runway extension
TORONTO/March 4, 2014 â€“ Over 500 local residents and major waterfront businesses have shown their support for an enhanced Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport as part of a revitalized mixed-use waterfront.
Redpath Sugar, Pinewood Toronto Studios, as well as a group of local residents, have made official submissions to Toronto City Council to express their support for Porterâ€™s plans to add jet service from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. The proposal would add the quietest commercial jets in production, Bombardierâ€™s CS100, to Porterâ€™s fleet to support longer-range service to new destinations, including Vancouver, Winnipeg, Florida and California.
In an open letter to city councillors, more than 500 waterfront residents voiced their support for Porterâ€™s proposal to fly quiet new jets from the airport. The letter points to Porterâ€™s â€œpositive contribution to our community since they began flyingâ€ and that â€œtheir growth is part of maintaining a vital waterfront,â€ while challenging assumptions by those opposed to the plan.
Leaders from prominent waterfront companies have highlighted the benefit of a direct connection between other creative centres and downtown Toronto to their industry.
â€œReducing the commute and travel time between major film destinations, such as Toronto to Los Angeles, is an important consideration for film and television productions,â€ said Blake Steels, president of Pinewood Toronto Studios. â€œThis convenient transportation connection provides an additional competitive advantage for our industry.â€
â€œHaving easy-to-access flights that serve major eastern U.S. markets is important to companies like Corus that are located in Torontoâ€™s downtown core,â€ said John Cassaday, president and CEO of Corus Entertainment. â€œPorterâ€™s proposal to extend their service with flights to western destinations like Los Angeles and Vancouver will provide enhanced travel opportunities and greater efficiencies for local businesses.â€
Both local residents and businesses expressed support for the airport as part of a revitalized mixed-use waterfront.
â€œOur facility has been located on Queens Quay for over 50 years,â€ said Jonathan Bamberger, president of Redpath Sugar. â€œWe believe that with good planning, we can have a successful waterfront with different uses. A mixed-use waterfront like Torontoâ€™s with its schools, theatre, industry, television studios, hotels, condos and an airport only enhances what our city has to offer.â€
Porter has proposed introducing jet aircraft at Billy Bishop Airport that meet strict existing noise limits. A runway extension of up to 200 metres into the water at each end will stay within the airportâ€™s existing marine boundaries and not affect traditional boat traffic. More information and a complete copy of the waterfront residentsâ€™ letter is available at
â€œWe appreciate the support of our neighbours in this effort to make a great airport even better for Toronto,â€ said Robert Deluce, president and CEO of Porter Airlines. â€œThese opinions represent a diverse range of people who choose to live and work on the waterfront alongside a thriving airport. Everyoneâ€™s goal is to ensure that waterfront development, including the airport, happens in a balanced way.â€