Summer 2017 was an enormous success for YVR. Not only did the YVR team pull together to ensure we excelled during our busiest period ever, we also kept on surprising and delighting our communities, passengers and partners with announcements, events and milestones. Here’s a quick recap . . .
We welcomed an impressive range of new air services throughout the summer, connecting our passengers all over the world. This included Air Canada’s services to Frankfurt, Nagoya, Taipei, London Gatwick and Boston, as well as new partner Hong Kong Airlines and their ambassador Jackie Chan, who I challenged and thankfully did not have to fight. We also announced a number of upcoming services including new airlines Interjet and Flair Airlines with flights to Mexico City, Toronto, Edmonton and Kelowna. And Air Canada surprised us with a late-summer announcement that included new services in 2018 to Paris and Zurich and increased service to Melbourne, which starts in December, as well as increased service on their London-Heathrow service.
Our team was back out in the community, attending festival days all over the Lower Mainland. And a big highlight was our second annual YVR Chill Out event at Flight Path Park. This fun festival was a great success, with over 3,500 people from the community attending as well as Sea Island employees. Visitors enjoyed community partner booths, live music, food trucks, family-friendly games, treats, prizes and much more.
Our environment team kept up the great work. For the sixth year in a row, YVR and Vancouver Aquarium hosted the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup at Iona Beach Regional Park. This year, the cleanup fell on International Coastal Cleanup Day and over 350 volunteers worked together to remove 215 kg of litter from the shore.
We reached another environmental milestone, renewing our Level 2 Airport Carbon Accreditation through Airports Council International. This is an important step towards reaching our goal of reducing YVR’s emissions 33 per cent in 2020.
And, of course, we can’t forget the launch of the Less Airport Stress Initiative (LASI). This new customer care program has YVR Ambassador Dogs throughout the terminal, providing everyone with a new way to deal with stress and anxiety. It was a big hit with the public, who appreciate seeing a friendly, furry face on our terminal.
The last team I will mention is our airside construction crew. This team of YVR employees and contractors was out on the runways and taxiways every night, repairing key sections and making sure the safety of our airfield is top-notch. And thank you to our neighbours for their patience during this busy period.
We have a busy year-end coming up, with lots of exciting announcements and events. And I’m confident it will all go smoothly, thanks to the amazing team that just delivered a solid summer. Everybody who works at the airport and on Sea Island deserves credit for our achievements. So thank you once again to everyone at YVR—to our employees, partners and volunteers. Your efforts are the key to our success.