Close Billy Bishop Airport: The Video

Parks not Planes has just released a 12-minute video making the case for closing Billy Bishop Airport, moving its flights to Pearson, and converting the site to recreational use. In the first part of the video, filmmaker Joan Prowse discusses its detrimental impact on the nearby Bathurst Quay community, where she lives. In the second part Toronto lawyer Brian Iler discusses the precarious financial situation of Porter Airlines — once synonymous with Billy Bishop – which explains why Porter’s flights at Billy Bishop keep declining as it relocates to Pearson. In the third part I outline how to compare the status quo with Parks not Planes’ preferred alternative. I also show why the claim that Billy Bishop creates billions of dollars in so-called economic benefits is specious.

This video was released now because the City of Toronto will soon have to decide whether to permit Ports Toronto to build runway end safety areas for Billy Bishop (on landfill in the harbour), as Transport Canada will require as of 2027. In addition, Billy Bishop’s lease on city-owned land expires in 2033. Ports Toronto and Nieuport Aviation, which operates Billy Bishop’s terminal, are lobbying furiously. With the release of this video, Parks not Planes is fighting back. David versus Goliath? We’ll see about that.

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