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Porter to start service to Washington's Dulles airport

The back of a Porter Airlines Bombardier Q400 turboprop aircraft is seen in Toronto February 23, 2009.

MARK BLINCH/MARK BLINCH/REUTERS

Porter Airlines Inc. will start service in April between Toronto and Washington Dulles International Airport, bolstering its regional network.

Effective April 16, Porter will launch daily flights between Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport and the U.S. capital.

It marks the sixth U.S. destination for Toronto-based Porter, which began operations in 2006.

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"In the last six months, we've polled our passengers. Washington was certainly the top destination choice for our passengers, based on the internal surveys that we did," Porter president Robert Deluce said in an interview Wednesday. He added that there will be three daily round-trips on weekdays for the new route, one on Saturdays and two on Sundays.

Air Canada, which offers service between Toronto's Pearson International Airport and Dulles in Virginia, also flies between Pearson and Washington's Reagan National Airport.

Jack Potter, president of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, said he's looking forward to welcoming Porter. "Dulles International Airport is the international gateway not only to Washington, but also to a significant part of the eastern seaboard, and this new air service from this leading Canadian business destination will be a great addition," he said in a statement.

Mr. Deluce said Porter, which operates a fleet of 26 Bombardier Q400 turboprops, is considering Philadelphia as a destination for late 2012 or early 2013.

Meanwhile, with business brisk at the Toronto island airport, an affiliate named Porter FBO Ltd. has served notice that it will raise rental charges for tenants such as owners of small planes who need hangar space.

Mr. Deluce said the increases are the first in more than five years, and new rent reflects competitive charges for southern Ontario.

As well, Porter FBO has made improvements through renovations of facilities. "Nobody likes a rent increase, and that's what this is, but it is also an alignment of our rent with what we've seen out there at market rates," Mr. Deluce said.

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About the Author

Brent Jang is a business reporter in The Globe and Mail’s Vancouver bureau. He joined the Globe in 1995. His former positions include transportation reporter in Toronto, energy correspondent in Calgary and Western columnist for Report on Business. He holds a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Alberta, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of The Gateway student newspaper. Mr. More

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