The owner of an eight-year-old flight school in London plans to launch a similar venture at the Chatham-Kent Municipal Airport within the next few weeks.
"I'm chomping at the bit to get going,'' Mike Schlievert of Crosswind Aviation told The Daily News Wednesday. "All I'm waiting for is a certificate from Transport Canada.''
Schlievert said he intends to start off with a Cessna 172, a four-seater trainer plane and has a list of a dozen or more candidates waiting to enrol in the program.
The cost of a recreational pilot licence is approximately $6,000 to $7,000 while a private licence costs approximately $10,000.
A resident of Rodney, Schlievert has graduated more than 100 students at his London school.
"Because of the proximity of my home to Chatham-Kent I have always considered opening a flight school at the municipal airport,'' he said. "And I've received excellent co-operation from airport manager Marion Smith.''
Schlievert said a flight school "validates'' an airport and he is looking forward to the many improvements planned for the local facility.
He said he isn't concerned about the large number of wind turbines in the vicinity of the Chatham-Kent airport.
Schlievert said there is and will continue to be a growing demand for licensed pilots because of the aging population.
"There is pent-up demand for pilot training in the Chatham-Kent area,'' he said.
Smith said she understands the new pilot training facility is scheduled to open in the near future.