'Circulating' Thunder Bay airport drivers to be ticketed

The Thunder Bay airport is cracking down on what it calls "circulating" drivers.

Circling around to avoid parking fees inconsiderate, counterproductive, says airport CEO

Signs posted at the Thunder Bay airport warn drivers that repeated trips around the parking lot are forbidden. (Josh Lynn/CBC)

The Thunder Bay airport is cracking down on what it calls "circulating" drivers.

New signs have been posted, warning drivers that repeated tours around the parking lot are forbidden.

Thunder Bay airport CEO Scott McFadden hopes drivers will cooperate with the new initiative. (Jeff Walters/CBC)

Airport CEO Scott McFadden said people who don't want to pay for parking as they wait to pick someone up are being inconsiderate.

"[They're] clogging up the traffic throughways by driving around and around in circles," said McFadden. "We see a lot of people who are seemingly partially in a dream as they do it ... so it just doesn't work well."

The purpose of the new measure is "to allow clear access to the front of the terminal building for taxis, courtesy vehicles and private vehicles that are dropping off or picking up passengers," he said.

Cost savings used up

McFadden added that people hoping to save money by avoiding the cost of parking could be doing themselves a disservice.

"These days we're paying six bucks a gallon for gasoline, so you very quickly use up any cost savings in the price of gas," he said.

McFadden said he hopes people will cooperate with the new initiative, rather than wait to be ticketed.

But he said drivers who don't want to pay for parking can use the special "cell phone lane" near the Canadian Forces Monument, which can accommodate about six vehicles.

Drivers can park for free and wait for a call from an arriving passenger, then drive to the front of the terminal to pick the person up and load the baggage without having to enter the parking lot.

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