Secure tenancies are beginning to return to Courtenay Airpark (CAH3) after a summer filled with apprehension and protests on the part of the small airport’s stakeholders.
eFlight readers may recall our reports last August of the City of Courtenay’s proposal to effectively destroy the airport by running a roadway and bridge across the northern end of the 1800-foot runway, a measure that would also prevent use of the airpark’s floatplane ramp.
Larry Jangula, the mayor at that time, proposed a motion that the proposal be killed and it was carried. However, a number of tenants had been placed on month-to-month leases instead of normal extensions as per previous policy and consequently tenant tenure remained an unresolved issue.
In a positive development, city council announced on Monday that Park Café has been granted a five-year lease extension with an option to renew for an additional five years. Café owner Donna MacLean told local digital news site mycomoxvalleynow.com that she felt “awesome” about the news.
The Courtenay Airpark Association (CAA), the not-for-profit leaseholder and operator of the airport, will also have the airport’s aging floatplane ramp incorporated into their lease, paving the way for its replacement as it approaches the end of its useful life. The ramp replacement has already been approved by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans, and its replacement and ongoing maintenance will be the responsibility of the CAA.
Former city councillor and newly elected Courtenay mayor Bob Wells said, “Going forward, I want to make sure we have a great Airpark that is well supported, and is there long into the future.”