Vancouver firm takes over operation of Iqaluit airport

Concert Infrastructure Fund acquires majority share in consortium that manages facility

Last week, Vancouver-based Concert Infrastructure Fund purchased a majority share in Arctic Infrastructure LP, the consortium of companies that manages the Iqaluit International Airport. (Photo courtesy of Iqaluit airport/Twitter)

By Nunatsiaq News

Iqaluit’s airport has a new operator.

Last week, Vancouver-based Concert Infrastructure Fund purchased a majority share in Arctic Infrastructure LP, the consortium of companies that manage the airport.

Concert acquired the stake from InfraRed Capital Partners, a U.K. real estate firm. The terms of the sale were not disclosed.

While Concert manages the airport, Nunavut Airport Services Ltd., a subsidiary of the Winnipeg Airport Authority, will continue to run day-to-day operations at the Iqaluit airport facility.

The Iqaluit International Airport is a public-private partnership, also known as a P3, with the Government of Nunavut.

The project consortium also includes Bouygues Buildings Canada and Sintra.

When the project first launched in 2014, the GN estimated the net cost of its payment to the P3 group at over $375 million by the end of 30 years—the lifespan of the current project licence. The airport opened in 2017.

The new airport project included a new passenger terminal off Federal Road, a new service building, runway repaving, a new apron and new runway lighting.

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(10) Comments:

  1. Posted by Northern Inuit on

    I don’t know what’s worse in this situation, that a Vancouver based company now runs Iqaluit Airport.

    Or that no one in Nunavut realizes how much power Nunavut Airports Ltd or Winnipeg Airports Authority actually has running Nunavut Airports. Ask ED&T how much Winnipeg Airports has to do with our Airports, if anything happens they investigate first.

    WASCO and their bunch wield a lot of power up here and I am sure it doesn’t end there.

    • Posted by Israel MacArthur on

      Yes, they do, and that is the way it will remain until we develop our own abilities in this field. We are years away from having the local skills, or any local business with the capital/abilities to run this airport.

      There are many questions to be asked about PPP, and we should rightly wonder about private companies benefitting off of the taxpayer; we should not begrudge WASCO its influence as there is no local competition.

  2. Posted by pissed off on

    THis whole deal is so convoluted and obscure it`s not even funny !!!

    People from Winnipeg, Vancouver, France , name it!!

    If that new company purchases the share of the UK fund it is because there is very good money to be made off the back of the Nunavut people.

    I would like to know who was dealing with this file at the GN .

    Probably retired shortly after the deal was signed.

    Draw your own conclusions.


  3. Posted by The Old Trapper on

    This should serve as a warning to the GN, beware of P3 – Public Private Partnerships.

    It really shouldn’t need to be said but the reason private companies enter into a P3 deal is because of the PROFIT they want to make. Nothing wrong with that in business, but I do object to it when it is a government provided service.

    Basically tax dollars are used to build (or guarantee the building of) public infrastructure. Why add in a 30%, 40%, profit margin for a company. Don’t forget that the reason they can “do it cheaper” is usually because they have lower wages and benefits. In the end though it is usually more expensive due to the profit being built into the project. And in many cases government bureaucrats of the set up these projects for their friends and/or get hired by the firm operating the P3.

    Beware very wary of any P3.

  4. Posted by Question Mark on

    How do you expect this infrastructure to be funded? How badly did Nunavut need an airport? If it wasn’t something that the area didn’t need, the people could have waited years until the Government could raise the fund? A P3 to taxpayers is like purchasing a mortgage. In the GN’s eyes, this was the best way to get your airport as soon as possible. The consortium used their funds to finance the project, the tax payers pay back the consortium over a set number of years. Either way, the tax payers are paying for an airport.

    And The Old Trapper, that is not true, it doesn’t get just given to friends. For this project, there was a two-part procurement process which required consortiums to provide the most cost-effective and valuable design, construction, financing, operations and maintenance.

    • Posted by sbagchee on

      Sorry QM, GN and most other governments hardly ever decide on their own if they actually need or need to upgrade any public infrastructure facility. Nor do highly paid bureaucrats provide proper evaluations and inputs into the making of such decisions and policies. The actual push comes from corporate lobbyists–push along with veiled threats and sotto voce promises of camouflaged personal incentives. There is likely to be little factual basis for the argument that corporations get into these projects only after the governments of the people independently and of its own accord decide to implement a project. It is naive to think Corporates get selected only on the bases of superior technical expertise and by charging the lowest possible money. Even the tender vetting system is not without private sector pressure.
      I don’t know if there is a better method of doing things more for public benefit than private ones. But let us not always assume that public infrastructure projects express purely public desire–through its elected government–and that corporations give life those schemes out of the kindness of their hearts–and at minimum possible profit.

      • Posted by Profound Throat on

        You are only a few tokes away from chem-trails, my friend.

        Speaking of which, Iqaluit would be a perfect chem-trail refilling station, wouldn’t it? Geographically midway on those transpolar routes, isolated from prying eyes by high airfares, protected by a docile territorial government.

      • Posted by Phil on

        You dispute that Iqaluit needed airport upgrades?

        The fact that the yellow airport was unable to meet the needs of passenger volume and security requirements is just the most obvious thing that needed upgrading. (Remember how you would get crammed in like sardines after security into a room that had no water or bathroom?)

        A lot of that money went into increased capabilities and runway improvements, which were also needed.

        Your conspiracy theory around government officials is presented without evidence, and deserves to be disregarded without evidence.

  5. Posted by Putuguk on

    In other news, my personal transportation infrastructure was made by Bombardier, a multi-national conglomerate spun off the main company in 2003 and now owned by guys in Boston, Montreal and a Quebec bank.

    If I had financed buying my machine, I would have had to deal with my bank in Toronto.

    If my sikitu breaks on me, I have to deal with the dealer down in Winnipeg.

    If my parts don’t come in, I have to deal with the airline down in Yellowknife.

    It is so confusing. The power these companies have over me is overwhelming. Inuit should have control over this. The sky is falling!

    Oh, the engine started for the ten thousandth time.

    Meh, No worries.

    • Posted by Carl on

      This could all be avoided if the Inuit owned the means of production!

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