Discours - Paul Benoit - le 1er mai 2001

Remarks for Paul Benoit at May 1st, 2001 news conference

Good morning, and thank you for coming to see us today.

Today you will see the vision of a new Ottawa International Airport - a modern efficient airport that will make this community proud.
I am delighted to announce that we will begin construction within days. We are expanding the airport. The expansion is practical, affordable and necessary. It will lead to better service for the community now and in the future.

La nouvelle aérogare doublera le nombre de quais pour les avions et nous permettra d'accommoder les périodes de pointe. Nous pourrons finalement offrir à nos clients un stationnement protégé des intempéries. En bref, la transition entre le transport terrestre et le transport aérien sera grandement améliorée.

Nous préparons ce projet depuis plus de quatre ans. Nous avons tout fait afin d'être prêts, et cette planification rigoureuse m'accorde un haut degré de confiance que nous livrerons ce projet dans les temps, et selon notre enveloppe budgétaire.

This project is the result of a planning process that goes back to 1997, when the airport authority began managing these facilities. The planning work has been rigorous, and I am completely confident that we will deliver on time and on budget.

You have heard me say this before but I cannot stress it too often. We are entirely self-financed. We are a privately run company formed to manage the airport on behalf of the community. We are not government-funded. We are traveller-funded.

Nos revenues couvrirons tous les coûts reliés au projet, sans aucune subventions gouvernementales. Les frais d'amélioration aéroportuaires, provenant de nos clients en partance, suffiront à couvrir tout le financement, et nous remercions la communauté de son appui.

To borrow an idea from our high-tech community, this upgrade has scalability. It can grow to meet demand. We will build the airport that our community needs - and no more.
Phase One of this project will be complete by the spring of 2004. This phase will bring us a new terminal building with a clean, modern design. It will offer two-level road access, and a passenger bridge will link it to the parking garage.

La Phase deux prévoit l'ajout de 15 autres quais, et la démolition de l'aérogare actuelle. Nous construirons lorsque nous en aurons besoin. Selon les projections actuelles, aux environs de l'an deux mille dix.

Phase Three, when we need it, will expand the parking structure and the number of gates in the new terminal building. Again, based on current passenger projections, we plan to complete Phase Three in 2020.

This is a large project. Phase One alone is the biggest construction project seen in the national capital region in decades.

Deux défis nous attendent :
Un - compléter ce projet dans le temps, et selon notre budget. Nous réussirons.

Deux - continuer à bien servir nos clients dans l'aéroport actuel. Ce ne sera pas facile. Aujourd'hui, nos quais n'acceptent plus d'avions en période de pointe, nos aires d'attentes n'ont pas assez de sièges, nos stationnement sont pleins.

You know, someone asked me the other day whether this expansion makes sense given the current uncertainty about the economy. Yes, I read about companies cutting back, just like you. But I have to tell you that the number of passengers travelling through our airport continues to rise. In fact, we would not mind a slowdown at all because we're running flat out every day.

Even if our passenger volume slows down, this project must still go ahead. The existing facilities are stretched way beyond design capacity. And history shows that every economic downturn has simply set the stage for more growth later.

So, we move forward. We will break ground this month. This weekend we will change the main roadway to make room for the new terminal building. We will also need to take away part of our parking area.

This is an important public transportation change that travellers need to know about. Please consider taking a taxi or public transportation, or ask someone for a lift. If you must bring your car here, leave yourself some extra time to find a parking space. We have added 225 spaces in the credit card lot next to the terminal. We have also added 250 spaces in the economy lot. It's not next to the terminal - but it does have a shuttle bus with a friendly, courteous driver.

Now, let me say a word about that driver and the other people who work here. I am so proud of the airport staff. They have done the work that makes this place run. They run this airport like a business. They put the customers first. They do it right. And they will continue to make the airport a place that works for our community, all the way through this expansion project.

Je suis fier de l'équipe assemblée pour cette expansion. Ils font partie de l'élite de l'industrie aéroportuaire. Notre communauté a besoin d'eux, elle a besoin d'un nouvel aéroport.

Let's look at the work they have accomplished so far. The design is complete. Now, David Caulfield, our project director, will walk you through the new airport.