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Saint John Airport lists commercial properties for lease

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The Saint John Airport is taking the next steps in transforming their space to make the Port City terminal a place for travellers to easily reach whatever destination they may be travelling to.

Of its more than 600 acres of ready to be developed land, the airport has put 37 of those acres on the market for commercial lease in its Local Services Zone and Airport Amenities Zone.

“We are in conversation with a number of developers who would be interesting in building some of the facilities we are talking about,” says Saint John Airport CEO Sandy Ross. “Our goal is to get the airport into being fully commercially viable, to being profitable, and to delivering great service to the folks of Saint John.”

In the short-term, Ross is hopeful to see a gas station and quick service food restaurant be built in its Local Services Zone. In the more distant future, the CEO would like to see a hotel added to the site to service the entire community.

The Local Services Zone and the Airport Amenities Zone at the Saint John Airport have both had their land put up for commercial lease through the real estate company Colliers. (Source: collierscanada.com)He also notes cargo expansions could be possible, noting the current ability the airport has to extend the runway from 7,200ft to 10,000ft.

“The folks at (Port Saint John) have done an outstanding job of making Saint John a logistics hub for North America over the next century,” says Ross. “The quadfecta…really is ocean, road, rail, and air for the opportunity to really see the fulfilment of that logistics vison here in Saint John.”

Ross insists the costs of any new developments would not be passed onto travellers in any way. He is hopeful to see shovels in the ground next summer.

One project appeared to already be on the go. The website ccdcanada.com has a project listed relating to an more than $7 million manufacturing facility to be built in Logistics Park of the property. Ross says this isn’t the case.

“I suspect that represents an addition that could be made to one of our exiting tenant’s properties,” Ross says. “But I can’t say more then that.”

The City of Saint John has been working alongside the airport to help get the land to market. Brian Irving is the acting general manager of the cities industrial parks and says the city will bring their knowledge in developments to help get these projects off the ground.

“The urgency and the timing was never quite right but it is now so it is really exciting as this is not a new idea,” Irving says, claiming this project has been talked about for over 15 years. “Between Sandy and his team and some of the senior leadership around the city we have finally recognized that the time is right.”

Irving says the expansions will help lure flights to the Saint John Airport, limiting the travel for Saint Johnners ahead of their vacations.

“I think we failed to realize how important a strong airport is in your community,” Irving admits. “I think we share the same sentiments about the time it takes to drive to Moncton or Halifax if you are trying to get some options so it would be nice for Saint John to have some enhanced options in the future.”

The airport says no decisions will be made on any future developments with a public consultation meeting with residents.

For more New Brunswick news visit our dedicated provincial page.

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