Western Nunavut air terminal gets an overdue launch party
“The new Taloyoak air terminal improves access to cargo, and domestic and medical travel, and improves passenger safety”
Ten months after it started to receive passengers, the new air terminal in the western Nunavut community of Taloyoak finally had its official opening recently.
Nunavut Premier Joe Savikataaq, Transportation Minister David Akeeagok and Netsilik MLA Emiliano Qirngnuq attended the celebrations on Wednesday, Sept. 12.
“The opening of this new air terminal shows the GN’s commitment to connecting Nunavummiut to one another through strategic investment in transportation,” said Akeeagok in a news release on the official opening. “Aviation plays a critical role for our communities in the North. Airports are essential in Nunavut and this facility will greatly benefit the people of Taloyoak.”
The two-storey, $6.3-million air terminal building is larger than the previous building, which was about 40 years old, and contains additional space for the public, airline staff and community aerodrome radio operators.
It’s also more accessible for people with disabilities.
“The new Taloyoak air terminal improves access to cargo, and domestic and medical travel, and improves passenger safety,” Akeeagok said in the release. “This is an example of how our territory’s transportation infrastructure supports economic growth.”
The GN said it is considering using the building design for other air terminal buildings in the territory’s smaller communities.
The construction of a new air terminal in Taloyoak follows years of complaints from people in this community of about 1,000 about the former air terminal’s cramped quarters, bad access, poor ventilation and peeling floor covering.
In 2017, the auditor general also slammed Transport Canada for neglecting Arctic airports, because remote northern airports are essential for supplying northern communities with fresh food, health care and emergency medical evacuation.