Walking to the airport

[Cache – #26]

Later this month, I’m going to catch a plane by walking to the airport.  Conjures up images of me slogging along the side of the highway with 18-wheelers blowing by, I know.  And then you might wonder why I’d want to skip the malodorous cab ride.

Yet walk I will.  And it will take me all of 10 minutes, because I will be schlepping not to Pearson, which is a 30-minute cab from downtown Toronto, but strolling to this city’s downtown landing strip, renamed by our federal government from Toronto City Centre Airport to Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport.

Too bad the name strips the airport of its crucial point of difference – that it’s right downtown, on an island just a hundred metres from shore.  The airport’s incredible convenience has been a key success factor behind Porter Airlines’ burgeoning passenger traffic (in March, Porter celebrated the 100,000th flight of its four-and-a-half-year history).

For people already familiar with the airport, the name change doesn’t matter so much.  They obviously know where the airport is, and most of them called it the Island Airport anyway (and they still will).  But for those not acquainted with it – being many millions of people in Porter markets outside this city – the loss of the word “Centre” is a significant blow struck by a government that should be in better tune with the needs of business.


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