At the meeting, Azam Khan, the City of Cold Lake’s general manager of infrastructure stated, “The city has been conducting a peer-to-peer expansion of feasibility studies since 2022, and we are presenting it to the committee for feedback and awareness. Also to add, the government of Alberta extended a grant in February that council approved that allows us to do some of the Phase 2 work.” 

According to information from the City of Cold Lake, the municipality allocated $50,000 in 2022 for an Airport Expansion Feasibility Study and concept design. The study aims to review current assets and operations, conduct a gap analysis, and offer recommendations for enabling scheduled flights at Cold Lake Regional Airport. 

In May 2024, council approved a capital budget amendment of $180,000 for Phase 2 of the project. The grant became available at the end of February when the Government of Alberta’s Regional Airport Development Grant Team invited the City to apply. 

The application has been approved, with the Government of Alberta contributing a $144,000 grant to the project, while the City of Cold Lake will commit $36,000 – 20 per cent of the project cost.  

This additional funding will allow the City to complete the following:  

  • TP312 Certification Gap Analysis 
  • Preparation of essential manuals, including: 
  • Airport Operations Manual 
  • Safety Management Manual 
  • Wildlife Management Manual 
  • Snow Removal and Ice Control Plan 
  • Emergency Response Plan 

Adam Martin, president and senior project director at HM Aero Aviation Consulting (HMRO), spoke during the meeting to share insights into the ongoing feasibility and concept design study for the airport expansion.  

“Our firm is extremely pleased to be invited here tonight to speak to you about the airport expansion feasibility and concept design study that’s currently in draft form and as was mentioned the phases or subsequent phases are underway now,” said Martin. 

The study, initiated in late 2022, aims to enable scheduled passenger services at Cold Lake Regional Airport.  

“We started in January 2023 really to study the requirements to enable scheduled passenger services to be initiated at the Cold Lake Regional Airport. Really, it looked at what the regulatory requirements were for those services, what we need in terms of infrastructure, as well as supporting operations,” Martin explained. 

He detailed the comprehensive approach of the study, which includes airport certification, design elements, and passenger security screening.  

Highlighting the current state of the airport, Martin noted, “It was originally constructed in 1979. You have a 3,000-foot runway that serves aircraft group number AGN2 aircraft. It was last rehabilitated pavement wise in 2013.” 

The study’s recommendations include starting with a 19-passenger aircraft service.  

“Our current recommended schedule is up to 2029, but this could be flexible depending on demand,” Martin added. 

Coun. Bob Mattice raised a question about potential usage for oil field workers.  

“The 19 passenger air vehicles, is there any spin that we could get oil field workers or work going from Cold Lake to Fort McMurray?” 

Martin responded, indicating future possibilities.  

“There could be those opportunities. At this point in the project, we haven’t reached out and that would maybe be part of the air service marketing side of things.” 

Council thanked Martin for the presentation and accepted the presentation as information.  

By Chantel Downes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jul 01, 2024 at 08:59

This item reprinted with permission from   Lakeland This Week   Bonnyville, Alberta

Comments are Welcome - Use the 'Join the Discussion' above any replies, or 'TheRegional / Chat' below replies. Both links take you to the same place. You will be asked to become a registered user if you are not one already - Posts are moderated