These upgrades improve the passenger experience, and also support the expansion of aviation-related business, industry and training opportunities in Campbell River.
In anticipation of larger aircraft and increased traffic numbers—and in serious need of a general upgrade—the Campbell River Airport commissioned development of a long-term expansion plan. Elements of the plan included an additional hold-room, a larger ticketing area, exterior canopies and walkways and new security and baggage systems. In the first phase, completed in 2011, the ticketing area was expanded, the restaurant redone, the curbside canopy installed and the finishes upgraded throughout the public spaces. One of the explicit goals of the project was to express the 'sense of place' unique to Campbell River, B.C. The specific themes chosen were the culture of the area's First Nations, the commercial and sports fishery, the local flying community, and the industries of the island, particularly the wood industries.
The roof of the hold room is framed with deep glulam beams through which patterns of holes have been factory cut. The result is a lighter looking, truss-like structure that alludes to the construction of early airplanes. The wood walkways are comprised of steel columns and timber beams prestained in a silver grey—the natural colour of weathered wood on the coast. These structures allude to both the wharves in the area and, with the sawn curve in the overhead beams, to the frames of the old ships.