Saturday, September 25, 2021
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Customer enhancements coming to Lethbridge Airport thanks to federal funding

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LETHBRIDGE, AB – If you’re flying in and out of the Lethbridge Airport, you’ll start noticing some changes to the terminal building over the next few months.

The city has received just over $583,000 from the federal government (Western Economic Diversification Canada’s Regional Air Transportation Initiative) to make improvements at YQL that aim to enhance the customer experience.

Things like a self check-in kiosk, baggage system upgrades, powered wheelchairs for people with mobility challenges, and a visual passenger paging system to help those with hearing difficulties.

Mayor Chris Spearman says strengthening the Lethbridge Airport is vital to the economic development of this entire region.

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Lethbridge City Council had previously invested $2.6 million into the airport which was leveraged to secure $23 million in provincial and federal funding. That money is being used to eliminate safety risks, fast-track critical projects and position the airport for pandemic recovery.

The new customer enhancements should be finished by the end of March 2022.

This newly announced federal funding will support:

  • Common Use Terminal System: Install a common use terminal system that Canada’s main air carriers already use at other airports. This will lower route start-up costs as airlines wouldn’t be required to provide and maintain terminal system equipment, provide tech support or system upgrades.
  • Self-Check-In Kiosk System: Provide passengers with access to boarding pass and bag tag service through the use of self-check in kiosks.
  • Baggage System Upgrade: Upgrade the existing insert only baggage system with a rotating baggage carousel. This will prevent bag jams during deplaning, free up baggage handlers to conduct faster aircraft turnarounds, lower operating cost for the airlines and provide a better customer experience for public.
  • Powered Mobile Wheelchairs/Pushers: Assist passengers with mobility challenges in getting on and off of airplanes. These units will also increase safety for both the passenger and airline staff. 
  • Visual Passenger Paging System: Install a visual paging system to assist passengers with hearing disabilities as well as passengers that may have been distracted and missed their message. This system will provide an additional layer of customer service and could help decrease delays and customer experience issues
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Patrick Siedlecki

Pat has been a mainstay in the CJOC News department from the time the station launched in 2007. He’s been in the position of News Director since then and has been anchoring daily news casts as well as reporting and working behind the scenes.

Community is important to him and keeping CJOC listeners and readers informed about what’s happening across southern Alberta and beyond.

Pat has been in radio broadcasting for the past 24 years, starting in Port Alberni on Vancouver Island in 1997 and then moving up island to Nanaimo for another few years before heading to Lethbridge in 2007.

Pat grew up in the small Saskatchewan farming town of Foam Lake. After high school, he went to Western Academy Broadcasting College (WABC) in Saskatoon prior to moving to the island.

Pat also spent several years broadcasting hockey in the BCHL as well as seven years as the radio voice of the Lethbridge Hurricanes in the WHL.

Pat has been working at Cornerstone Funeral Home in Lethbridge as a Certified Life Celebrant and Funeral Assistant since 2016.

News and sports have always been Pat’s passion from the time he was a teenager and he’s always been grateful to have had the opportunity to make that part of what’s been a fun and long radio career!

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