PEI

Charlottetown Airport bounces back after snowmageddon

Record snowfall in the early months of 2015 cut into traffic at the Charlottetown Airport, but an expansion of service at the end of the year saw passenger numbers rebound to almost match record levels in 2014.

Economic impact study attributes $114M to airport

Charlottetown Airport came close to matching 2014's record number of passengers in 2015. (CBC)

Record snowfall in the early months of 2015 cut into traffic at the Charlottetown Airport, but an expansion of service at the end of the year saw passenger numbers rebound to almost match record levels in 2014.

"We started off with a pretty bad first quarter, due to weather that saw a significant decrease in traffic," said airport CEO Doug Newson.

As we go into the summer months everybody was pleasantly surprised with the traffic levels that we saw.— Airport CEO Doug Newson

"But as we go into the summer months everybody was pleasantly surprised with the traffic levels that we saw."

The airport authority released its annual report this week. It showed revenues were up 7.4 per cent over projections, hitting $8.7 million, up from a projected $8.1 million.

At 316,628, passenger numbers were down just slightly from the 317,827 the previous year.

Newson credited new and expanded services that came on line at the end of the year for the strong performance, including a new winter service to Florida offered by WestJet.

Runway improvements getting started

Along with the annual report the airport released the results of an economic impact study.

It found the airport made a $114-million contribution to the P.E.I. economy in 2015.

Newson expects that impact will go up, with the airport starting on a three-year program of runway improvements this year.

That project will cost $20 million, and Newson said most of that money will go to P.E.I. businesses.

with files from Angela Walker

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