As part of its application to operate Bombardier CS100 aircraft from Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (BBTCA), Porter Airlines has submitted an update of its runway proposal to the City of Toronto. The update contains a second proposal for a runway extension that Porter would also like to be given consideration.
The original proposal presented in May 2013 includes a 168-metre extension into the water at each end of the main runway. The second proposal, submitted September 3rd, includes a 200-metre extension into the water at each of the main runway, which would reduce take-off noise and have no effect on the boating community.
According to the airline, both options meet the city’s request to not result in “an extension of the Marine Exclusion Zone as currently configured, that would materially encroach upon the western channel shipping channel.”
“We want to be clear that we have now presented two runway designs for the city to review as part of its process,” said Robert Deluce, president and CEO of Porter Airlines. “The 168 metre proposal is still a very good option and one that we support. The 200 metre option is another scenario that provides other benefits we believe are worth considering.”
At a press conference in early April, Porter announced that it had signed a conditional purchase order for 12 Bombardier CS100 aircraft, with options for an additional 18 CS100 aircraft. The CS100 aircraft—a jet that runs as quietly as the Q400 turboprops the airline currently uses—would allow the carrier to add several new medium-haul destinations to its roster, including Vancouver, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Calgary, Los Angeles, Florida and the Caribbean.
However, before Porter can purchase the jets, it must get two amendments made to the Tripartite Agreement that has governed Billy Bishop Airport Toronto City Airport since 1983. Signatories to the agreement are the City of Toronto, Government of Canada and Toronto Port Authority. The two amendments Porter is requesting are:
- Permission to use the CS100 aircraft at the airport
- Permission to extend the runway in one of the two ways proposed to accommodate the new aircraft
Local residents’ groups are opposing the planned expansion.