A floatplane dock reconfiguration, which will see Salt Spring Air move its dock finger 14 feet inland, is in the works in Ganges Harbour.
The move will mean better customer service, said Salt Spring Air principal Philip Reece.
“What we need is a bigger plane, and the reconfiguration will accommodate that,” said Reece during a Harbour Authority of Salt Spring Island open house on Saturday.
Salt Spring Air became part of Harbour Air Seaplanes in 2015. Also in 2015, a minority share in Harbour Air, the world’s largest seaplane airline, was acquired by Zongshen Group, owned by Chinese billionaire and entrepreneur Zuo Zongshen, according to Harbour Air’s website.
“Merging has allowed for more efficient use of flights,” said Reece. “We’ve kept all our staff and even increased staffing levels.”
SS Air has recently been facing an increase in demand for floatplane service.
“Last year we carried over 25,000 people,” said Reece. “In the summer we had such a big demand we were turning away over 30 per cent of our passengers.”
Reece said the company was simply unable to carry passengers at the times they wanted to fly, because of the size of their aircraft.
The airline currently has two Beaver aircraft and would like to add an Otter. The Beavers can only carry five passengers, while an Otter can transport 15.