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Letter: Kelowna airport is in need of complete overhaul

Letter-writer says the airport is indeed confusing to navigate

To the editor:

Re: Confused passengers at YLW, Page A10 Wednesday, Capital News Feb. 7, 2018.

This report validates a letter to the editor printed on Wednesday, April 8, 2015 – YLW needs entirely new terminal building. In that letter the airside corridor was specifically cited as in need of a complete overhaul. This needs attention first before adding anymore Tim Horton outlets.

The terminal building is challenged for space in a narrow valley and instead of expanding laterally the logical solution is to go vertical. Construct a new departure/arrival hall adjacent and above the existing terminal spanning 75 per cent of the apron, although due to poor planning of incremental expansions this may no longer be viable.

One day will airport management need to consider a whole new terminal to erase shortsighted, insufficient projects? By taking the cheaper option now future passengers might pay significantly more improvement fees than they needed to.

Another example of many is vehicular parking. Obviously it is less expensive to expand the lots outward as they keep doing, but a parkade makes sense if you need more space for aircraft parking. Often, while trying to accommodate a solution two more problems are created because management is trying to piece forward a terminal design appropriate for passenger traffic numbers in 1988 not 2018. A major reconfiguration is needed to bring the terminal in line with numbers approaching 2 million per year.

The present airside corridor is indeed confusing, inefficient, a security hazard and has to many changes in grade going up, down and around. As a frequent traveller at YLW I have personally helped on many occasions passengers who didn’t know which way to turn in the narrow, artificially lit corridor/tunnel. The current build out is embarrassing and some serious, hard choices need to be made now if passenger growth continues as predicted.

Is it still possible to even get a decent expresso in the terminal?

Rodney Kozar, Kelowna

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