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WestJet Seeks Slots to Fly 737 Jets From Toronto’s Billy Bishop Island Airport

alexd

Administrator
Staff member
WestJet Seeks Slots to Fly 737 Jets From Toronto’s Billy Bishop
By Frederic Tomesco Dec 18, 2013

WestJet Airlines Ltd. (WJA) will seek to operate Boeing Co. (BA) 737 Max aircraft from Toronto’s Billy Bishop airport if it gets takeoff and landing slots at the island airfield, Chief Executive Officer Gregg Saretsky said.

“We would like to have access to the island airport but there are no slots available,” Saretsky said in a telephone interview from Calgary yesterday. “We would like to have the opportunity to fly jets ourselves from that airport. The 737 is capable of operating off the runway at Billy Bishop.”

Passenger jets are prohibited at Billy Bishop -- a ban that Porter Airlines Inc. wants to overturn. Toronto City Council’s executive committee voted two weeks ago to defer until 2014 a decision on whether to allow jets and lengthen the runway.

WestJet agreed in September to buy 65 737 Max aircraft with a list value of $6.3 billion, with deliveries due to start in 2017. Canada’s second-largest carrier doesn’t own any of the 202 slots at Billy Bishop. Porter, with 172, and Air Canada (AC/A), with 30, are the only airlines that operate there.

The airport sits on a Lake Ontario island about 100 meters (328 feet) from Toronto’s downtown waterfront. It draws business fliers and skiers heading to Quebec’s Mont Tremblant or Burlington, Vermont.

Asked whether the Max would comply with noise restrictions at Billy Bishop, Saretsky said: “I would say a qualified yes. The Max is not yet flying, so we have asked Boeing for information on what the noise output is. We would have to look at whatever requirement was imposed on the airport.”

Porter wants to operate jets at Billy Bishop as part of a plan to double its flight network and reach as far as Los Angeles and the Caribbean. It’s agreed to buy as many as 30 CSeries jets from Bombardier Inc. (BBD/B), an order that is conditional on the runway extension and a removal of the jet ban.

WestJet operates about 95 daily flights at Toronto’s Pearson International Airport. The airfield, Canada’s busiest, is located about 30 kilometers from the city’s downtown.

from Bloomberg News:
WestJet Seeks Slots to Fly 737 Jets From Toronto
 

acheron

TRIBE Member
lol fuckin' A go for it!

but you gotta think this is a competitive action to stir up the NIMBY's against the airport expansion.
 

Rage

TRIBE Member
I'm all for it. Even though I find Porter to be far superior, anything that helps our island airport service more destinations - I'm all in!
 
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alexd

Administrator
Staff member
I'm all for it. Even though I find Porter to be far superior, anything that helps our island airport service more destinations - I'm all in!
If Westjet gets that, then Air Canada will want to land 737s there too.

Aren't planes already landing there one after the other with only the minimum recommended space between them? The only way for these companies to fly more passengers out of the Island airport is to increase plane size, or to build another runway.
 

SolChild

TRIBE Promoter
It would be nice to fly out of the Island Airport and be in Miami 3 hours later.

I know there's lots of debate regarding noise and environmental pollution etc...but it would be nice.
 

sianspherica

TRIBE Member
It would be nice to fly out of the Island Airport and be in Miami 3 hours later.

I know there's lots of debate regarding noise and environmental pollution etc...but it would be nice.
Yes, it would be nice.

It would be nice for a lot of things to happen.

It would be nice to fuck Kate Upton.

It would be nice for Wal-Mart to pay its employees $20 an hour.

It would be nice for the TTC fare to be $1.

It would be to live on the waterfront of Toronto and enjoy the lake without motherfucking jets flying around all day long.

It would be nice to take a train from Union Station direct to Pearson Airport. Oh wait, that will be possible in 2015.
 

AdamAnt

TRIBE Member
I wouldn't be as opposed to jets on the island airport IF they could sort out the traffic congestion at Lakeshore and Bathurst. Adding more capacity to the airport will further destroy traffic flow in the area.
 

acheron

TRIBE Member
does anyone know if the airlines' desire is to *replace* the existing turboprops with the jets or to add the jets into the mix?
 
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alexd

Administrator
Staff member
Imagine the sheer convenience if I could fly to South Africa from Billy Bishop Airport!!! The Emirates A380 is probably a lot quieter than those nasty old 737s! They would just have to extend the runway to say, the Sound Academy, or maybe the Humber River.... But imagine the convenience!
 

silver1

TRIBE Member
The only way for these companies to fly more passengers out of the Island airport is to increase plane size, or to build another runway.
Well for sure. Their current Porter fleet of prop planes seat 70. The Bombardier planes they've tentatively ordered seat around 110

And I'm sure if they expand, they'll reduce the volume of daily flights for their short runs. Currently I think they do 16 flights a day to Montreal, Ottawa etc. I bet that drops to 10-12 a day so they can do 2 a day each for their longer destinations they want to add.
 

coleridge

TRIBE Member
For all you Billy Bishop airport haters you'll like this story.

My flight back from Ottawa on Sunday was delayed so long while we waited for the plane to arrive from Halifax that once we departed we had to fly into Hamilton (only airport in the area that stays open past midnight) and then take a shuttle bus to Toronto.

I could have driven from Ottawa to Toronto and turned around and driven half way back in the time it took me to get home.
 
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silver1

TRIBE Member
For all you Billy Bishop airport haters you'll like this story.

My flight back from Ottawa on Sunday was delayed so long while we waited for the plane to arrive from Halifax that once we departed we had to fly into Hamilton (only airport in the area that stays open past midnight) and then take a shuttle bus to Toronto.

I could have driven from Ottawa to Toronto and turned around and driven half way back in the time it took me to get home.
Wait..... Why wouldn't they fly you to Pearson in that situation?
 

erika

TRIBE Member
Yes, it would be nice.

It would be nice for a lot of things to happen.

It would be nice to fuck Kate Upton.

It would be nice for Wal-Mart to pay its employees $20 an hour.

It would be nice for the TTC fare to be $1.

It would be to live on the waterfront of Toronto and enjoy the lake without motherfucking jets flying around all day long.

It would be nice to take a train from Union Station direct to Pearson Airport. Oh wait, that will be possible in 2015.
Best answer (though I'm not sure who Kate Upton is :p )
 
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Mephisto

TRIBE Member
YYZ is open 24/365, but they're capped as to the number of flights past 1230 am to 630 am.
yup. only a few after-hours slots for each operator per night. people like to shit on air canada all the time (warranted for the most part, admittedly) but when things have gone off the rails in the past week (airport closures, mechanical issues) AC was the only operator with the lift capability to send in 767s/777s to clean up the backlog after these events.

imo 7000' of runway would be the minimum required to service transcontinental stage lengths out of the island. even so, that airport will always have very limited potential owing to the fact that it only has a single runway that isn't serviced by very good approaches
 

AgentSanchez

TRIBE Promoter
I'm all for the smaller jets Porter wants to fly, because I like porter.

WetJet can suck a nut - between AC, Porter, and WestJet, WestJet is now EASILY the worst (in my subjective experience). It seems like all the bitter old counter ladies from AC in the early 2000s now work for WestJet and the flight attendants can be downright rude.
 

AgentSanchez

TRIBE Promoter
yup. only a few after-hours slots for each operator per night. people like to shit on air canada all the time (warranted for the most part, admittedly) but when things have gone off the rails in the past week (airport closures, mechanical issues) AC was the only operator with the lift capability to send in 767s/777s to clean up the backlog after these events.
In the last 3-4 years Ive actually found AC to be a GREAT airline - I consider it a miracle of union management that they've completely turned around their baseline for customer service in like 6 years. I wonder how they did it?

Anyway... I think that people like to slag AC because they USED to be crappy for a very long time.
 

Maui

TRIBE Member
Yes, it would be nice.

It would be nice to take a train from Union Station direct to Pearson Airport. Oh wait, that will be possible in 2015.
I started taking the ttc to and from the airport a few years ago. I got sick of the extra $100 for a cab to and from the airport when I could get an extra b in Mexico with that money. Seriously it's a quick subway ride and short bus jaunt, easy no problem. Unless your one of those chooches with multiple large suitcases...which means your doing life wrong anyway.
 
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