located 10 km west of the Town and is owned and operated by the Town of
Peace River. Its longest runway is 5,000 feet with 737 jet capabilities.
The terminal building is 21,000 square feet in size.
No one is exactly sure when
the first Peace River Airport was commissioned, but in April of 1937 it
(Click on the photo to enlarge)
That first airport was located on the west bank of the
Peace River, about 3 miles south of the present town site. The
site was abandoned when one of Grant McConachie's pilots had a near fatal
accident on landing. The airline was called "United Air Transport
Limited" whose head office was located at the Edmonton Municipal
Airport. The airline was later to become Pacific Western Airlines.
Our historical records indicate
that the present site (NW Section 29, Township 83, Range 22, West of the
5th Meridian) was picked by none other than the famous "Wop"
May. The original configuration
of runways shows that there were three. Two are still operating 04/22
and 08/26 the third appears to have aligned itself with 18/36. Each was
3,000' long and 500' wide, apparently cross wind landings were to be avoided
at all costs. There were
no buildings at the site and only a dirt road. On rainy days it took 2
hours to fly from Edmonton and a further 2 hours to traverse the muddy
road to town.Things gradually
improved with the addition of a terminal building of sorts, a telephone
line to town and improvement of the landing surfaces. Three airline companies
serviced Peace River at that time, Yukon Southern, MacKenzie Air Service
and Peace River Airways.In
the fall of 1942 an American Corps of engineers extended the 04/22 runway
by a further 2,000 feet. A weather station was also added by the Americans.
No doubt the Americans were there as part of the Alaska Highway effort,
but, just exactly what role they played is lost to antiquity.
On May 28, 29 of 1949 the Peace
River Airport played host to one of the first airshows in the region.
The Air Cadets of the region played host to the R.C.A.F. who brought with
them a helicopter, two Harvard trainers, an Avro Anson, a Beech Expeditor
out of which two parachutists jumped.All
reports indicate that people were quite taken with the helicopter and
folks from miles around attended. Unfortunately Sunday's performance was
cancelled due to rain.In
June of 1960 the Peace River Airport closed down in order to complete
extensive construction to the airport. The runway was paved and an air
terminal was built. Peace River Airport re-opened its runway for major
airline service in January of 1961. The official opening was held August
9, 1961. This date marked the signing of a long term lease (40 years)
between the Department of Transport and the Town of Peace River whereby
the Town, with subsidization from Transport Canada, would operate the
Airport.During 1964 the
first Flight Service Specialists were hired to man the radio at the Peace
River Airport. Prior to this, the pilots spoke to the radio operated by
the Weather Office at the airport. Even before the Weather Office, the
agents of Pacific Western Airlines and Canadian Pacific Airlines had a
radio in their homes which they used to communicate with the pilots. PWA
did build a small radio shack for their agent.A
New Terminal building was opened September 8, 1984. The estimated cost
of construction being 4.5 million Heritage Fund dollars.The
airport was purchased from Transport Canada in 1996 by the Town of Peace
We don't guarantee the information is fresh and accurate. The data may
be wrong or outdated.
For more up-to-date information please refer to other sources.