About Us

News Release - June 21, 2017

The Comox Valley Airport reports another successful year of passenger growth and fiscal strength at Annual Public Meeting

Another record year for passenger growth at YQQ was reported at the Annual Public Meeting of the Comox Valley Airport Commission (CVAC). An increase of 5.1% was recorded for the 2016 calendar year as 368,733 people travelled through the airport - a 19% increase over the past five years.

"Our community is indeed fortunate to enjoy the current magnitude of air service at YQQ," commented Fred Bigelow, Comox Valley Airport CEO. "We have our nation's largest airlines providing service to three major Canadian hubs, offering endless options and the ability to tap into their global networks."

In contrast, a lesser increase of 1.1% was reported for the fiscal year (April 1, 2016 to March 31, 2017). This was a direct reflection of reduced seat capacity during that period. The exit of CMA in February of this year resulted in reduced service to YVR; however, with both Air Canada and Pacific Coastal Airlines responded by adding additional service. Bigelow also reported on the reduced seat capacity from WestJet with the utilization of the Q400 aircraft. "It would be difficult to find a community in Canada that is as well served as the Comox Valley," states Bigelow. "What's important now is that we continue to fill those planes and feed our airlines' hubs."

A strong financial statement was also reported for the 2016/17 year. YQQ reported an increase in revenue from $4.3 million to $4.7 million while expenses increased slightly from $3.3 million to $3.4 million, resulting in a net surplus of $1.3 million. YQQ's continues to offer one of the lowest Airport Improvement Fees across the country, providing a competitive advantage when seeking new air service.

"We are pleased with YQQ's financial performance in 2016/17, particularly as we plan for major capital projects in the coming years," said Frank van Gisbergen, Chair of CVAC. "Providing additional parking in order to meet the demands of those peak travel seasons is a priority. Our increased passenger volumes also means a terminal expansion is now on the horizon."

Bigelow also commented on the past winter season and the challenges it placed on operations. "We owe a debt of gratitude to 19 Wing for their tremendous support in keeping our Airport open, operational and safe," stated Bigelow. "We have always known we could count on their support, but the total effort we received this past winter truly stands out."

The CVAC Board of Directors also welcomed new Board member Kathleen Bell in November of 2016. Kathleen has recently relocated with her family from Toronto to the Comox Valley. Kathleen is a business leader and marketing professional who has worked in both the private and the not-for-profit sectors. An experienced strategic leader, she brings a strong skillset in planning and event management. Previously, Kathleen held the position of Head of Marketing position for Subway Restaurants where she over saw marketing, operations, research and development for Canada.

YQQ's 2017 Accountability Report can be found on the Comox Valley Airport's Website at: www.comoxairport.com under About Us/Publications.

~~ 30 ~~
About the Comox Valley Airport

The Comox Valley Airport (YQQ) is an economic driver for Northern Vancouver Island, supporting about 193 direct jobs including airlines, airport management, security, food and beverage, retail and ground transportation. The airport and tourism business community together generate $367 million in Gross Domestic Product and $701 million in direct economic output for the community. YQQ is operated by the Comox Valley Airport Commission, which was established in 1996 as a non-share capital and not-for-profit organization to operate the civil aviation facilities, including the terminal and apron at YQQ. The airfield and its associated systems, including air traffic control, are operated by the Royal Canadian Air Force at 19 Wing Comox on a continuous 24-hour basis.

Media Contact:

Maxine Montgomery
Comox Valley Airport
250-890-0829 ext 253