home > airport

History of Airport

Heritage Resources

The Airport neighbourhood is located in the northwest corner of the City of Winnipeg and includes the headquarters for 17 Wing Canadian Air Force.

Winnipeg's airport history formally began in May 1928 when the Winnipeg Flying Club officially opened Stevenson Aerodrome, named in honour Manitoba aviator and pioneer bush pilot, Captain Fred J. Stevenson (1896-1928). [1] In 1930, Western Canada Airways became the first major carrier to use the field and six years later, Trans-Canada Air Lines, a national airline, was created with Winnipeg as its operating headquarters. Quickly the airport expanded, with new hangers, an RCAF hanger and three hard surface runways. World War II brought another significant expansion of services and buildings, including the airplane manufacturing facilities of Midwest Aircraft and MacDonalds.

In 1963-1964, the new air terminal building was constructed, along with airport terminals in seven other cities across Canada. It was part of a federal initiative to seek a "Canadian Style" and to modernize its airport network. The results were some of the best examples of the Modern or International Style structures built in Canada and Winnipeg's air terminal stands today as the most intact of these. The airport was renamed Winnipeg International Airport in 1958 and Winnipeg James Armstrong Richardson International Airport in 2006.

[1] Winnipeg Airports Authority website, http://www.waa.ca/history, 2008.