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Airport Calgary (Canada) - International

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YYC Calgary International Airport
Aéroport international de Calgary YYC
Airport typePublic
OwnerTransport Canada
OperatorCalgary Airport Authority
ServesCalgary, Alberta, Canada
Hub for
Time zoneMST (UTC07:00)
  Summer (DST)MDT (UTC06:00)
Elevation AMSL3,606 ft / 1,099 m
Coordinates51°0721N 114°0048W / 51.12250°N 114.01333°W / 51.12250; -114.01333Coordinates: 51°0721N 114°0048W / 51.12250°N 114.01333°W / 51.12250; -114.01333
Direction Length Surface
ft m
08/26 6,200 1,890 Asphalt
11/29 8,000 2,438 Asphalt
17R/35L 12,675 3,863 Asphalt
17L/35R 14,000 4,267 Concrete
Statistics (2018)
Cargo (tonnes)147,000

Calgary International Airport (IATA: YYC, ICAO: CYYC), branded as YYC Calgary International Airport, is an international airport that serves the city of Calgary, Alberta, Canada. It is located approximately 17 km (11 mi) northeast of downtown and covers an area of 21.36 km2 (8.25 sq mi).[3] With 17.34 million passengers and 244,027 aircraft movements in 2017, Calgary International is the busiest airport in Alberta and the fourth-busiest in Canada by both measures.[4][5] The region's petroleum and tourism industries have helped foster growth at the airport, which has nonstop flights to an array of destinations in North and Central America, Europe, and Asia. Calgary is also a hub for two major Canadian airlines: Air Canada and WestJet.

Built in the late 1930s, the site has since grown to house four runways, two terminal buildings with 5 concourses for passengers, warehouses for cargo handling, and other infrastructure. The Calgary Airport Authority operates the property while paying rent to the federal government. Close to the airport is the Deerfoot Trail freeway for transport into the city, and public transit also serves the airport.


The first airport to serve Calgary opened in 1914, in the neighbourhood of Bowness. It occupied one square kilometre (0.39 sq mi) and consisted of a hut and a grass runway.[6][7] Operations shifted to a new airport southwest of the city in 1928, named Old Banff Coach Road Airport. However, issues with turbulence in the area prompted another airfield to be built the following year in Renfrew. This site was known as Calgary Municipal Airport.[7]

As the city of Calgary grew in the area surrounding the Renfrew airport, the city government decided to relocate operations another time. It purchased an area of land north of Calgary in 1938 for about $31,000; this is the site of the current airport. It was named McCall Field after World War I ace and lifelong Calgarian Fred McCall.[6][8] Equipped with a paved runway, the airport opened on 25 September of the following year, about two weeks after Canada entered World War II. As a result, the federal government assumed control of the site in 1940, repurposing it as a fuel and maintenance stop for aircraft involved in the war effort. Regular passenger flights continued during this period.[6][7] At the end of the war, the airport had been expanded to include additional hangars and other infrastructure.[6] City officials resumed managing the airport and repurposed the new hangars as a passenger terminal.[7] An improved terminal opened in 1956.[6][7]

Jet aircraft landed at the airport for the first time in 1961, and flights from Europe commenced the following year. The terminal received five expansions; however, the city government eventually did not have the funds to cope with rising traffic.[6][7] It proceeded to sell the site to the federal government in 1966 for $2 million. The new owner refurbished the runways and renamed the site "Calgary International Airport".[6] Eleven years later, it constructed a new terminal worth $130 millionthe core of the present facility.[6][7]

The airport again came under local management in 1992 when the Calgary Airport Authority was formed, although the authority still pays rent to the federal government.[6][9] Four years later, WestJet began operations with a base at the airport, occupying an expanded area of the terminal.[7][10] Another runway was inaugurated in 2014,[11] and a new international terminal opened in 2016 at a cost of $1.6 billion, adding 24 gates.[7][12] "YYC", the IATA code for the Calgary airport, was also affixed to the airport's official name following a successful branding effort.[13]


Passenger terminals

The Calgary airport houses two terminals, one for domestic operations and the other for international flights. The domestic terminal itself contains three concourses labelled A, B and C; the international terminal is composed of Concourse E for United Statesbound flights and Concourse D for flights to other countries.[14] Passengers travelling to the United States clear customs and immigration prior to departure at the preclearance facility.[15]

The international terminal operates under a call-to-gate system in which passengers wait in a main seating and shopping area; they then proceed to the gate once flight information is posted.[16] The two terminals are connected by both walkways and a separate path for the YYC Link service. Airport employees transport connecting passengers along this corridor in ten-seat vehicles.[12]

WestJet has criticized the design of the international terminal, which opened in 2016. The airline's CEO stated that the distance between the terminals was too long for connecting travellers and that YYC Link was insufficient to solve this problem. As a result, WestJet had to alter its schedules in order to allow additional time for passengers transiting through Calgary.[17][18] The Calgary Airport Authority responded that it did not see issues with the connections process, although it said passengers would need some time to adjust to the new facilities.[17]


The Calgary airport is equipped with four runways with the following dimensions:[1]

  • Runway 08/26 is 6,200 ft × 150 ft (1,890 m × 46 m)
  • Runway 11/29 is 8,000 ft × 200 ft (2,438 m × 61 m)
  • Runway 17R/35L is 12,675 ft × 200 ft (3,863 m × 61 m)
  • Runway 17L/35R is 14,000 ft × 200 ft (4,267 m × 61 m)

The longest runway in Canada at the time of its 2014 opening, Runway 17L/35R was built to reduce congestion and better accommodate larger, heavier aircraft: the weight of such aircraft, combined with the low air density resulting from the airport's high elevation and temperatures during the summer, means that a longer runway is necessary for take-off. Runway 17L/35R is also layered with concrete, a material more durable than the asphalt that composes the airport's other three runways.[19][20]


The airport has allotted an extensive amount of area for cargo operations, including over 3,000,000 sq ft (280,000 m2) of warehouse space. Freight airlines such as Cargolux make regular trips to Europe, Asia, and other destinations.[21][22] In 2017, the Calgary airport handled a total of 147,000 tonnes of cargo.

Other facilities

At 91 m (299 ft), the airport's air traffic control tower was the tallest standalone control tower in Canada upon its opening in 2013; compared to the previous tower, it has space for more air traffic controllers and is situated closer to the centre of the airport, giving controllers better views of the airfield.[23] Meanwhile, the headquarters of Canadian North as well as WestJet and its subsidiary WestJet Encore are located onsite.[24][25][26] There are also two hotels on the airport property.[27]

Airlines and destinations

Aeroméxico Seasonal: Mexico City [28]
Air CanadaCancún, Frankfurt, Halifax,[29] LondonHeathrow, Los Angeles, MontréalTrudeau, Newark, Ottawa, TorontoPearson, Vancouver
Seasonal: Kahului, PhoenixSky Harbor, Puerto Vallarta, San José del Cabo, TokyoNarita, Winnipeg
Air Canada ExpressCastlegar, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, Grande Prairie, HoustonIntercontinental, Kamloops, Kelowna, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Nanaimo, Portland (OR), Regina, San Francisco, Saskatoon, Terrace/Kitimat (begins October 28, 2019),[31] Victoria, Winnipeg, Yellowknife
Seasonal: PhoenixSky Harbor
Air Canada RougeLas Vegas, TorontoPearson[32]
Air NorthEdmonton, Whitehorse[33]
Air TransatCancún, Puerto Vallarta, TorontoPearson
Seasonal: Amsterdam, LondonGatwick, MontréalTrudeau, Vancouver
Alaska AirlinesSeattle/Tacoma[35]
American AirlinesSeasonal: Dallas/Fort Worth [36]
American EagleChicagoO'Hare, Dallas/Fort Worth[36]
British Airways Seasonal: LondonHeathrow[37][38]
Central Mountain AirEdmonton[39]
CondorSeasonal: Frankfurt[40]
Delta Air LinesMinneapolis/St. Paul
Seasonal: Salt Lake City
Delta ConnectionMinneapolis/St. Paul, Salt Lake City, Seattle/Tacoma[41]
Edelweiss AirSeasonal: Zurich[42]
Flair AirlinesAbbotsford, TorontoPearson, Vancouver, Winnipeg [43][44]
Frontier AirlinesDenver[45]
Hainan AirlinesBeijingCapital[46]
Northern AirBonnyville[48]
Sunwing AirlinesSeasonal: Cancún, Cayo Coco, Huatulco, IxtapaZihuatanejo, Liberia (CR), Mazatlán, Montego Bay, Puerto Vallarta, Punta Cana, San José del Cabo, Santa Clara, Varadero[49]
United AirlinesChicagoO'Hare, Denver, HoustonIntercontinental[50]
United ExpressChicagoO'Hare, Denver, San Francisco[50]
WestJetAbbotsford, Atlanta, Cancún, Comox, Denver, Edmonton, Halifax, Hamilton (ON), HoustonIntercontinental, Kelowna, Kitchener/Waterloo, Las Vegas, LondonGatwick, London (ON), Los Angeles, Mazatlán, MontréalTrudeau, New YorkJFK, Orlando, Ottawa, Palm Springs, PhoenixSky Harbor, Puerto Vallarta, Regina, San Diego, San José del Cabo, Saskatoon, TorontoPearson, Vancouver, Victoria, Winnipeg
Seasonal: Austin, Belize City, Dublin, Fort Lauderdale, Honolulu, Huatulco, IxtapaZihuatanejo, Kahului, Liberia (CR), Loreto, Manzanillo, Montego Bay, Nashville, Nassau, ParisCharles de Gaulle, Phoenix/Mesa, Punta Cana (begins 13 December 2019), Québec City, San Francisco, St. John's, Varadero, Whitehorse, Windsor
WestJet EncoreAbbotsford, Brandon, Comox, Edmonton, Fort McMurray, Fort St. John, Grande Prairie, Kamloops, Kelowna, Nanaimo, Penticton, Portland (OR), Regina, Saskatoon, Victoria, Yellowknife [51]
WestJet LinkCranbrook, Lethbridge, Lloydminster, Medicine Hat, Prince George[51]


In 2016, YYC Calgary International Airport was the fourth-busiest airport in the nation in terms of the total number of passengers that transited through the airport: about 15.7 million. Despite an ongoing recession, there was a roughly 1.3% increase over 2015.[52][53] Of the total for 2016, travellers bound for domestic destinations constituted about 71%, and people travelling to the United States and other countries amounted to 29%.[53]

In 2017, YYC Calgary International Airport was again the fourth-busiest airport in Canada in total passenger volume: about 16.3 million, a 3.8% increase, more than double from 2016. This setting another record in passenger volume, surpassing the previous record set in 2016. YYC's cargo operations grew significantly with more than 147,000 tonnes of cargo moving through the airport, an increase of 7.7% from 2016.[54]

Passenger volumes for the period 20102018 are provided in the following table:[52][53][55]

Passenger traffic at Calgary International Airport, 20102018
Year Passengers Change Notes
2010 12,630,695 NA
2011 12,770,988 +1.1%
2012 13,641,339 +6.8%
2013 14,316,074 +4.9% Became third-busiest airport in Canada for the first time, ahead of MontréalTrudeau International Airport
2014 15,261,108 +6.6%
2015 15,475,759 +1.4% Again the fourth-busiest airport in the country
2016 15,680,616 +1.3%
2017 16,275,862 +3.8%
2018 17,343,402 +6.6%[56]

Cargo volumes for the period 20112018 are provided in the following table:[57]

Cargo traffic at Calgary international airport, 20112018
Year Cargo (tonnes) Change Notes
2011 116,000 NA
2012 119,000 +2.6%
2013 122,000 +2.5%
2014 128,710 +5.5%
2015 134,695 +4.6%
2016 137,000 +1.7%
2017 147,000 +7.3%
2018 146,000 0.7%[58]

Ground transportation

Deerfoot Trail provides freeway access to the rest of the city.[59] There is also a tunnel beneath Runway 17L/35R that links the east side of the airport site to the terminal buildings.[60] Two parking garages and a rental-car facility are situated across from the terminals.[14][61] Public transport options are also available at the airport: Buses operated by Calgary Transit link YYC Calgary International to downtown, a nearby station of the local CTrain light-rail network, and other parts of the city.[62][63]

Notable accidents and incidents

A West Coast Airlines flight from Spokane to Calgary via Cranbrook made a crash-landing shortly before the runway on 24 August 1963, although no one onboard was killed. A likely cause of the accident is the fact that the Fairchild F-27 was approaching the airport too low.[64]

Another incident occurred on the runway on 22 March 1984, when Pacific Western Airlines Flight 501 attempted to take-off. A component of the left engine broke off and hit the fuel stores in the wing, resulting in a fire that spread over the left and back portions of the Boeing 737-200. The pilots aborted take-off and exited the runway onto a taxiway, where flight attendants evacuated all passengers. While some suffered severe injuries, all the occupants survived.[65][66]



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External links

This article based on this article: Calgary_International_Airportexternal Link from the free encyclopedia Wikipediaexternal Link and work with the GNU Free Documentation License. In Wikipedia is this list of the authorsexternal Link.