Aside from Pierre Elliott Trudeau International Airport (YUL), Montreal has a second, lesser-known airport south of the city called Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport (YHU). The airport currently acts as a hub for private and regional airlines.
That’s all set to change next year, as Porter Airlines plans to build a new commercial terminal at Saint-Hubert Airport. This is a big step for the Toronto-based airline, which has been busily expanding its network and fleet in the recent past.
Porter to Open Terminal at Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport
As Porter Airlines prepared to take delivery of its Embraer E195-E2s in 2022, it expanded to Toronto Pearson International Airport to accommodate the aircraft. As it began to announce a suite of new routes late last year, it also indicated plans to expand its operations to other major Canadian hubs.
Today, we learned that Porter will invest in Montreal as part of its ongoing expansion. Beginning in mid-2023, Porter will begin construction of a new terminal at Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport, located south of Montreal’s downtown core in the suburb of Longueuil.
Construction is slated to be completed by late 2024, at which point it will become the second Montreal airport from which Porter offers flights.
Porter Airlines plans to use this new terminal to expand their operations significantly across Canada. The new commercial terminal at Montreal Saint-Hubert Airport is expected to add nine gates and over 21,000 additional square metres to the current building.
Once the expansion is complete, Montreal will become a second hub for the airline, with Toronto remaining as its primary base.
Porter Airlines has announced more than 10 potential routes that will launch from Montreal Saint-Hubert Airport, including Vancouver in the west, St. John’s in the east, and of course both airports in Toronto. Flights will be operated by Porter’s existing fleet of Dash 8-400 aircraft, as well as its expanding fleet of Embraer E195-E2 aircraft.
With the airport expansion, Porter intends to offer another choice for Montreal’s large suburban population.
The new terminal at Montreal Saint-Hubert Airport is expected to generate more than 500 permanent jobs, taking into account airline operations, as well as pilots and flight attendants who will be based in Montreal.
Inspired by Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport
Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport is currently a small airport with only one regional commercial airline, Pascan Aviation, which flies short routes within Québec. The new terminal Porter plans to build will also be open to Pascan Aviation, the two airlines intend to develop a codeshare partnership.
Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport is around the same distance to Downtown Montreal as the much-larger Trudeau International Airport. Interestingly, this will result in a similar situation as Billy Bishop compared to Toronto Pearson, with multiple airports serving different parts of the city and its environs.
Porter’s success at Billy Bishop has breathed life into the airline after years of decline, and Billy Bishop now generates $3 billion of revenue annually while serving just under three million passengers annually.
With another option to depart from Montreal, business and leisure travellers can enjoy a short commute to the city, which will be the main appeal for point-to-point travel, especially for residents of the South Shore.
Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport will become a complementary airport to Montreal Trudeau International Airport, from where Porter will also continue to expand its operations and offer flights.
It will be interesting to see if other airlines will also add operations to Saint-Hubert, in a similar way that Air Canada also offers flights from Billy Bishop Airport. In recent years, the airport had an expansion to its runway to accommodate larger aircraft.
Porter Airlines is building a new terminal at Montreal Saint-Hubert Longueuil Airport, an airport south of Downtown Montreal. Once complete, it will become a second Montreal airport from which Porter offers flights.
The new terminal will have nine gates and is expected to serve up to four million passengers annually. 10 new routes are slated to operate from the new terminal, including to Vancouver, St. John’s, and both Toronto airports.
The construction is set to be completed by late 2024, after it begins in mid-2023. Indeed, Porter Airlines is on an aggressive expansion as it takes delivery of a growing fleet of new jet aircraft and offers more long-haul routes across North America.