Airport History

Historical Photo of Harvard Aircraft Lineup

The Red Deer Regional Airport was built during World War II with the purpose to train Allied forces as part of the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan (BCATP) and was known as Number 36 Service Flight Training School (SFTS). When it re-opened in 1950 it was known as Number 4 Flying Training School (FTS) and was part of NATO training during the Cold War and eventually became Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Penhold.

This historical significance to the region is being preserved and brought back to light by a fantastic organization, the Harvard Historical Aviation Society. The Red Deer Regional Airport proudly supports their efforts to celebrate our patriotic history, and preserve the artifacts and stories of our region. For more information regarding CFB Penhold, please visit their website at

City of Red Deer

The City of Red Deer took over operation of the airport in 1965 and the Province extended the main runway 16/34 to 5,528 feet in 1980. The ownership of the airport was taken over on September 1, 1999, by the Red Deer Regional Airport Authority (RDRAA), which includes The City of Red Deer and Red Deer County as stakeholders.

Red Deer Regional Airport Authority (RDRAA)

The Red Deer Regional Airport Authority assumed ownership from the Province of Alberta and operation of the airport from The City of Red Deer on September 1, 1999. Where it was previously considered an industrial airport, today the Airport Authority has taken initiatives to attract scheduled airline services and to create a 'centre of excellence' for general aviation-related business in the region.

Detailed Information

For more detailed information about the history of the airport, please visit the Penhold Base website.

Harvard Aircraft Displayed at Red Deer Airport Entrance