Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Tunnel to Island Airport?

I was surprised to read about a proposal for a tunnel from the mainland to the Island Airport here in Toronto, to replace the 90 second ferry ride. It wasn't all that long ago that Mayor Miller campaigned successfully on stopping a proposed fixed link to the Airport. Since the fixed link was squashed, Porter Airlines began what appears to be a successful commuter business running flights out of the Island. It's popular with business commuters who can get on plane headed for places like Ottawa without having to go to the suburbs to do so.

I presume the airport is going to continue operating for some time to come, but I think they should simply keep the ferry service in place. It's a historical oddity that if anything adds character to the fabric of the city. There are legitimate complaints about having a downtown airport, and not just from Toronto Island residents. Let's not open the doors to expansion.


Candy Minx said...

I'm with you. I can't see why people can't walk or take TTC to the ferry and simply get to the island like that. I've done it a dozen times. There used to be a fabulous flight to NY from there. And also...surely corporate business travels are using Skype for inter-city conferences, no?

A tunnel? Jesus, do we learn nothing from New Orleans? It is possible that the drilling for oil in the Gulf of Mexico may have compromised (along with cutting down all the foliage and trees along N.O. coast) the natural oceans protection of life along the coast.

mister anchovy said...

Between 2,000 and 3,000 people each day use the Island Airport, all flying Porter. The cost of the tunnel is in the order of magnitude of $40 million. I don't think that's a very wise way to spend public money. Now if Porter was going to put up, say $35 million AND had a plan to make interesting public improvements to the land as part of the deal, perhaps a tiny public share is appropriate.