Edmonton airport closes part of terminal amid COVID-19 pandemic

Click to play video 'How COVID-19 travel restrictions are affecting Edmonton International Airport' How COVID-19 travel restrictions are affecting Edmonton International Airport
WATCH ABOVE: (March 26, 2020): As travel restrictions tighten up around the world, the Edmonton International Airport is seeing a major slowdown. Nicole Stillger reports – Mar 26, 2020

The Edmonton International Airport has closed down parts of its terminal.

In a message to travellers and staff, Tom Ruth, president and CEO of EIA, said the COVID-19 restrictions and reduced travel have affected the bottom line of the not-for-profit corporation.

“This pandemic has had severe impacts to our business, especially in the short-term,” said Ruth, “but I know we are not alone in this regard.”

READ MORE: Calgary airport announces partial terminal closures amid COVID-19 pandemic

Ruth said the closures are temporary due to reduced passenger volume and will help save money.

He said the partial terminal shut down will cut back on operational space.

The domestic/international passenger lounge space has been reduced by about 40 per cent, and some self-serve kiosks have been closed to allow for proper physical distancing.

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A separate space for U.S.-bound passengers has been allocated inside the domestic/international passenger lounge.​

The most notable change for passengers in the coming weeks will be a closure of a number of restaurants and concessions.

READ MORE: A look at how travel restrictions are affecting Edmonton International Airport: ‘It’s quiet’

“We have relocated some airline check-in counters,” said Ruth. “We hope you will understand that these temporary changes are necessary.”

Ruth said as a not-for-profit corporation, the EIA depends heavily on the revenue from flights and passenger traffic.

While commercial passenger service has been cut drastically, the EIA said cargo flights continue to operate and are vital to critical supply chains for medical, food and other supplies.

EIA also handles medevac flights and said it continues to support emergent health situations in remote areas.

The EIA said there have not been any layoffs and staff also continue to work at Villeneuve Airport in Sturgeon County.

“We cannot know when this crisis will end,” said Ruth.

“We appreciate your patience over the coming weeks and months.”

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