Jean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2106 posts, RR: 23 Posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 859 times:
One night in Late February, on the way up to do some night skiing at St-Sauveur, I caught a very quick glimpse of a plane landing at Mirabel. It caught me by surprise flying right over us and it was dark... It seemed really huge and I was sure I saw 4 engines. So of course I figured 747.. I forgot about it for a while but recently I realized that of the few airlines that regularly use Mirabel (Mega C3 and Transat is all I know of), none of them have any 747's. (Or any 340's, for that matter.) SO i'm wondering what this plane was. Maybe it was a 747 from another carrier that got diverted. But I hear Mirabel does a lot of Cargo business, so maybe it was someone's cargo 747. I think it was blue... which makes me think it could be the AN-124. Would Bombardier be chartering that plane into Mirable yet for it's new assembly plant there? I really have no idea..
Just thought this was interesting, any replies would be appreciated!
QB001 From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 2053 posts, RR: 4 Reply 4, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 698 times:
No, you're right : there are some AN-124 to YMX once in a while. I saw it myself landing there. I think it flies there for cargo business not necessarily related to Bombardier. After all, YMX is, sadly and wrongfully, marketed as kind of a cargo hub.
Never let the facts get in the way of a good theory.
Logos From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 768 posts, RR: 2 Reply 6, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 637 times:
Off topic a bit (and I know this has been discussed before, but the discussion didn't shed much light on it for me), but why isn't Mirabel Montreal's main airport? I can remember reading an article right around the time it opened (in the early 80s?) about how it was going to be Montreal's new, modern airport basically replacing Dorval.
Now some 20 (or more) years later, it's a cargo hub. What's up with that?
Jean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2106 posts, RR: 23 Reply 7, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 625 times:
People don't seem to like to go there because it's too far away from the city. However, personally I find this is a bit ridiculous. It is about a 35-40 minute drive to Mirabel from the very heart of Montreal... that may be a little bit more than what people would like, BUT it takes a good 20 minutes to get from downtown to DORVAL, too! So basically, people are claiming that Mirabel is unattractive because it has this "distant outskirts" image, but really all we're talking about is a difference of FIFTEEN MINUTES. I think the distance issue is mostly in people's imaginations. On the 35 minute drive, you pass by some farms, so I guess it *feels* like you're going too far out of thie city, whereas on the way to Dorval, all you're looking at is CONGESTED highway. For a while, I believe all international (not counting US) flights had to be done out of Mirabel, so it was really growing, but a few years ago ADM and the government decided to allow int'l flights from Dorval again. I'm not sure what their aofficial reasoning was, but I guess it came down to the distance issue, because that's about the only major advantage Dorval does have. So now only vacation charters and cargo use mirabel. At Dorval they're building a new transborder finger (Felix Sieder has some pictures of it on here), but to do that, they're having to take down some hangars! There's just no room left. Also, Air Canada is sorta based at Dorval so maybe they don't want to move much, and they have a lot of power. Some people are saying that the new Canada 3000/Royal/CanJet should make Mirabel their hub. If they did, they'd hav ea world-class airport just about all to themselves. However, it's a big risk to bet that they can get business travellers to make that (ahem) *long commute*. Also, if Mega-C3 is based at Mirabel, travellers won't be able to use their flights to connect to others, if the other airlines are still at Dorval. ADM and the government seem to be staying focused on Dorval at the moment, especially with the new construction there. But if the economy stays (gets?) strong here, Dorval is getting pretty darn close to it's capacity, so Mirabel's day may yet come.
p.s. One interesting fact that many of you may not know about Mirabel is that in terms of actual geographical area (certainly not in terms of paz or a/c movements!), YMX is actually the largest airport in the WORLD. SO, there's plleeenty of room for it to expand, unlike Dorval.
Bryston From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 137 posts, RR: 0 Reply 8, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 620 times:
you just open a viper`s nest! This YUL vs YMX debate is almost religious!
But, to make a short story, when YMX opens, it handles all international flights, while YUL keeps the domestic ones (and YUL - USA ones). A couples of years ago, the canadian government gives both Montreal`s airport to the managing organism "Aéroports de Montréal". ADM (with a huge AC`s lobying) state that all flights except charters and Cargo should be bring back to YUL. YUL was a lot closer to downtown Montreal, while YMX is at 50km. AC maintenance (and HQ?) was already at YUL and they were tired of having to cope with two airports.
This is the actual situation. YUL is now expanding, but ADM has already cut in the expansion plan because they don`t have enough money!
But the fate of YMX is not seal, as YUL cannot really expand anymore, at least, there`s no place for a fourth runway! Some says that the money they put in renovating YUL should have been put in a fast train between YMX and downtown montreal.
I am not an expert, so this is just to give you a rough idea. Maybe someone else could help to get more details??
Jean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2106 posts, RR: 23 Reply 9, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 612 times:
wow Bryston, look at that.. WE each answered within like 45 seconds of each other! Yea I forgot to mention the Train idea... There's already a commuter train to Blainville this (new this year) which is, umm, maybe 10 km from Mirabel... so MOST of the track is already there, for that matter. Maybe that'll help speed things along.
Logos From United States of America, joined Jan 2000, 768 posts, RR: 2 Reply 11, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 608 times:
Thanks, guys. I visited Dorval once but have never been out to Mirabel. The C3 idea sounds reasonable to me, especially seeing as they are a lower fare/charter carrier anyway (or at least that is their history).
Bryston From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 137 posts, RR: 0 Reply 12, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 599 times:
I once saw the initial plans for YMX. Hey, they almost use all the room they have! I think there was something like four terminals, six(!) runways plus one tiny runway for very short take-off planes (Maybe for vertical takeoff planes... YMX was design in the 60`s frenzy!!!).
The government wants it to be the major hub from Europe to North-America.
Well, history was different!
it seems that we are sharing the same toughs about YMX. I really love this airport!
And I hope that the venue of Bombardier will help to boost YMX appeal! And, like sooooo many other said, wouldn`t it be great to see Bombardier build that train?
Jean Leloup From Canada, joined Apr 2001, 2106 posts, RR: 23 Reply 13, posted (12 years 1 month 2 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 597 times:
Yeah, a train would really put them over the top, I think! WE'd still need cooperation from AC, I guess. BUT like I said, if Montreal continues to grow (and politics will probably determine that), then EVENTUALLY Mirabel has to become the #1 airport for Montreal. It may just be a matter of when. And those plans sound fantastic!