Neighbourhood airport closure ‘probable’
Markham not equipped to handle traffic says airport owner
RECENT NEWS THAT the Buttonville Municipal Airport could be closing has led to speculation about development at Markham Airport.
In April, the Buttonville Airport lost $1.6 million in annual funding provided by the Greater Toronto Airports Authority.
Owned by the
Sifton Family for nearly 50 years, the airport’s closure is “probable,” said Toronto Airways president Derek Sifton.
“My father went to his grave trying to keep this airport open,” Sifton said, adding the family would remain in the aviation business and that plans for site redevelopment are in place.
Peter Shurman,MPP of Thornhill, said the need for the transportation gateway provided by the airport is vital to York Region as well as the GTA.
“Where are the 350 aircraft that use Buttonville going to go?” Activity at the Markham Airport, on Highway 48 in Stouffville, might offer an answer.
For the past two years, trucks have dumped fill on the site, according to one area resident, leading to speculation of an expansion.
Calls made to the Markham Airport were not returned. Sifton said the site — in current form — could not handle Buttonville’s volume. “It would take a lot of money to upgrade the facilities.”