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The Star Does Pages On YYZ Is "Sorry" For Spotters

Sun Apr 04, 2004 6:21 am

It came as quitea surprise.... pages after pages on T-NEW and T-OLD at YYZ in the star. The array of articles includes:

Radio CFYZ talks to busy audience
'New' airport takes big first step
Travellers to get taste of Toronto

This one was more intresting:

10,000 lenses looking at you

But this one totally took me by storm:

Rubbernecking plane spotters grounded by closing of old Terminal 1


Watching planes take off and land at Pearson Airport — serious sport for some folks — isn't what it used to be, now that the old Terminal 1 is closed.

While the sweeping glass walls of the new terminal provide a panoramic view of aircraft moving around the tarmac, there is no elevated vantage point to take the place of the rooftop observation area of the old terminal, which was renowned among plane spotters as a great place for viewing.

When the old terminal was completed in 1964 and air travel was still beyond the reach of most people, the open rooftop was an instant hit.People dressed up their kids and came with their cameras, craning their necks to watch the planes zoom overhead.

"It used to be a great spot to watch the planes when international flights used the old terminal," says Chris Sundberg, 74, of Mississauga, a retired businessman who has spent hours a day for years observing and taking pictures of planes at Pearson.

After word got out in the late 1990s that the old terminal would be replaced, the plane watchers started a petition, asking the airport authority to create viewing areas for the public. It noted that other airports around the world have turned watching into a tourist attraction, including Zurich, where enthusiasts pay a small fee to use viewing areas.

Sundberg says the authority ignored the pleas of the watchers, who now have very few places left in the airport area where they can observe planes: the end of a runway on Airport Rd.; the gravel shoulder near the end of a runway on Highway 427; the parking lot at the Boeing aircraft plant in Mississauga; and a roadside area on Silver Dart Dr.

All the articles can be found at

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