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Airport beacons beckon

Castlegar Source
By Castlegar Source
September 13th, 2009

The million-dollar project that has beckoned Castlegar for more than a year will now become a reality, as the city moves forward with installing airport beacons in the hillsides surrounding local runways.

The six new hazard beacons will allow for night departures at the local airport, and represent a complex undertaking requiring the installation of rock anchors and bases, erection of towers and installation of the beacons themselves.

City council announced, at its regular meeting Tuesday, that the lights, towers and solar panels have already been ordered, with an invitation to tender issued for the site preparation and installations.

The contract was ultimately awarded to Hi-Tech Contracting Ltd.

Mayor Lawrence Chernoff said he hopes to see the beacons installed within 60 days, and operational by beginning of 2010.

“It’s tough to say for sure, though, since we’re at the mercy of weather, and the ministry still has to come in and approve (the beacons for use),” he said. “It’s exciting, though – both for safety and commerce in the region.

“It’ll be easier for commercial flights to come in when they know, if there’s any sort of delay, they’ll be able to take off again without having to wait until morning.

“In terms of safety, it’s really critical that we be able to get medi-vac flights out whenever necessary. Emergencies don’t just happen during business hours.”

Categories: General

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