June 14, 2018 4:35 pm
Updated: June 14, 2018 11:06 pm

YVR breaks ground on $9.1-billion airport upgrade projects

Vancouver International Airport has broken ground on a huge, $9.1 billion expansion project. Jill Bennett has the details.

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Vancouver International Airport (YVR) will be spending an estimated $9.1-billion on multi-year expansion projects, YVR president Craig Richmond announced at a groundbreaking event Thursday morning.

The investment will cover 75 major plans over the next 20 years, including terminal expansions, new parking options, improved vehicle rental facilities and an upgrade that will allow YVR to accommodate eight more wide-body aircraft by May 2020.

In 2017, YVR, which is one of the fastest-growing airports on the continent, welcomed a record 24.2-million passengers, according to a news release.

The airport is forecasting an estimated 32-million passengers to travel through every year by 2022.

That’s what prompted the terminal to find new ways to adjust to the expected increase in traffic, like reducing the wait times during check-ins.

Richard said it’s a time of record growth at the airport and these latest construction projects will help ensure people and products move through the airport faster and offer passengers more amenities.

The upgrades will also include an expansion of Pier D, which will feature a forest inside the terminal, according to YVR.

READ MORE: Vancouver airport unveils 20-year expansion plan

The work will create thousands of jobs for people in B.C. with about 2,500 full-time construction jobs on Sea Island and hundreds more off-site, the release said.

An estimated $150-million is being spent on adding an extra 300 metres of pavement to improve runway safety.

Money for the project comes from YVR’s non-profit operating model with all profits generated being reinvested back into the airport, said the news release.

~ With files from Jill Bennett and Ted Chernecki

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