St. John's International Airport

St. John's International Airport

Infobox Airport
name = St. John's International Airport

image-width = 150px

type = Public
owner = Transport Canada [ [ Airport Divestiture Status Report] ]
operator = St. John's International Airport Authority Inc.
city-served = St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador
location =
elevation-f = 461
elevation-m = 141
coordinates = coord|47|37|07|N|052|45|09|W|type:airport|display=inline
website = []
r1-number = 02/20
r1-length-f = 5,028
r1-length-m = 1,533
r1-surface = Asphalt
r2-number = 11/29
r2-length-f = 8,502
r2-length-m = 2,591
r2-surface = Asphalt
r3-number = 16/34
r3-length-f = 7,005
r3-length-m = 2,135
r3-surface = Asphalt
stat-year = 2007
stat1-header = Aircraft Movements
stat1-data = 39,708
footnotes = Source: Canada Flight SupplementCFS]
Statistics from Transport Canada. [ Aircraft Movement Statistics: NAV CANADA Towers and Flight Service Stations: Annual Report 2007] ]

St. John's International Airport Airport codes|YYT|CYYT is located convert|3|NM|abbr=on|lk=in northwest of St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada. The airport is part of the National Airports System, and is operated by St. John's International Airport Authority Inc.


Concern was expressed as early as September 1939 in the Canadian Parliament for the security of Newfoundland (which was not yet a part of Canada) in the event of a German raid or attack. It was felt that a permanent airfield defence facility was needed and as a result discussions were carried out among Canada, Newfoundland and the United Kingdom during 1940. In late 1940 the Canadian Government agreed to construct an air base near St. John's. Early in 1941, Canadian Prime Minister William Lyon Mackenzie King, informed Newfoundland Governor Sir Humphrey T. Walwyn of the intended location in Torbay. Newfoundland agreed, stipulating however, that Canada was to assume all expenses and that the aerodrome not be used for civil purposes without first receiving Newfoundland's permission. The Canadian Government agreed, and in April 1941 McNamara Construction Company began construction on the runway. At a cost of approximately $1.5 million, a pair of runways, taxiways, aprons, hangars and other facilities were built and in operation by the end of 1941. The Royal Canadian Air Force (RCAF) officially opened Torbay Airport on 15 December 1941. It was jointly used by the RCAF, Royal Air Force (RAF), and the United States Army Air Corps until December 1946.

On 18 October, 1941, three American B-17 Flying Fortress and one RCAF Digby made the first unofficial landing on the only serviceable runway available. Later that month a British Overseas Airways Corporation B-24 Liberator en route from Prestwick, Scotland, to Gander, made the first officially sanctioned landing during a weather emergency. The first commercial air service at the facility went into operation on May 1, 1942 with the arrival at Torbay of a Trans-Canada Air Lines Lockheed Lodestar aircraft with five passengers and a three-member crew on board. The first terminal building at the site was constructed in 1943. A small wooden structure, it was replaced by a larger brick building in 1958.

Although the airfield was not used as much as Argentia, Gander, Stephenville and Goose Bay Airports in the movement of large numbers of aircraft to England, it was still busy. The Royal Air Force had its own squadron of fighters, surveillance and weather aircraft stationed there. The RCAF personnel strength on the station during the peak war years was well over 2000. Through an agreement between the US, Canadian and Newfoundland governments early in 1947, the United States Air Force (USAF) took over the use of the airport facilities and utilized about ten of the buildings located there. The US Military Air Transport Service (MATS) needed Torbay Airport in order to complete its assigned mission at that time. Maintenance of the airport and facilities was done by the Canadian Department of Transport.

On April 1, 1946 the airport became a civilian operation under the jurisdiction of the Canadian Department of Transport. Confusion was caused by the presence of American military personnel at a civilian airport operated by the Canadian government in a foreign country. Consequently on April 1, 1953 control was turned back to the Department of National Defence. On 15 April 1953 the RCAF Station at Torbay was reactivated and RCAF personnel started to move in and began providing the necessary administration and operation of the facility to support the mission of its co-tenant, the USAF. Early in 1954 a rental agreement was signed between the USAF and the RCAF and the USAF acquired use of additional buildings.

The control tower originally constructed during the war burned down in an extensive fire at the airport on March 17, 1946, which caused one and one-half million dollars worth of damage. Construction was not begun on a new tower until 1951; it was opened in June 1952. A new Tower/Communications Building replaced that structure in March 1976. The tower was equipped with radio navigation and landing aids including precision approach radar, non-directional beacon and VHF omni-directional range.

The Transport Department maintained control over the terminal building. The facility remained R.C.A.F. Station Torbay until April 1, 1964 when it was returned to the jurisdiction of the Transport Department under the name St. John's Airport.

In 1981 the terminal building housed the offices of the airport manager and staff. There were ticket offices for Eastern Provincial Airways, Air Canada, Gander Aviation and Labrador Airways, a large waiting area, a secure departure lounge, a self-serve restaurant, a licensed lounge, a number of food concessions and rent-a-car facilities. In 1981 a small museum was being prepared to house the story of aviation in Newfoundland and related memorabilia.

In 2003, the air terminal was completely renovated, expanded and modernized by Architect John Hearn to meet the standards of other airport terminals its size across North America.

The airport is classified as an airport of entry by NAV CANADA and is staffed by the Canada Border Services Agency. CBSA officers at this airport currently can handle aircraft with no more than 165 passengers, however they can handle up to 450 if the aircraft is unloaded in stages.

Airlines and destinations

*Air Canada (Calgary, Edmonton(seasonal), Fort McMurray, Halifax, Montréal, Ottawa, Toronto-Pearson)
**Air Canada operated by Exploits Valley Air Services (Deer Lake, Gander)
*Air Labrador (Deer Lake, Goose Bay)
*Air Saint-Pierre (St. Pierre, Miquelon)
*Air Transat (Puerto Plata, Punta Cana, Varadero) [seasonal]
*Continental Airlines (Newark)
**Continental Express operated by ExpressJet Airlines (Newark)
*Provincial Airlines (Blanc Sablon, Deer Lake, Goose Bay, Montréal, St. Anthony, Stephenville, Wabush)
*Sunwing Airlines (Punta Cana, Toronto-Pearson, Varadero) [seasonal]
*WestJet (Calgary [seasonal] , Halifax, Toronto-Pearson)

Helicopter Service

*CHC Helicopter (Charter)
*Cougar Helicopters (Hibernia, Terra Nova, White Rose)
*Universal Helicopters (Charter)

ee also

*St. John's (Paddys Pond) Water Aerodrome


External links

* [ St. John's International Airport Authority]

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