Avro Arrow directs visitors to Edenvale
On a cold dark December night, a replica of the Avro Arrow landed in Edenvale. It had made an overnight flight on the back of a huge transport truck up Airport Road in the dead of night.
It was trucked from its former home at the Canadian Air and Space Museum at Downsview Park where it was proudly displayed until the museum’s closure in 2011. It is now at Edenvale Aerodrome being readied for its big unveiling at this year’s Gathering of the Classics.
Bob Coxon, a director with the Edenvale Aviation Heritage Foundation, said Edenvale Aerodrome owner Milan Kroupa arranged to acquire the museum’s collection with the intention of putting them on display at the Clearview facility. The goal is to make it an attraction for the area, along with the rest of the collection including a full size replica of its engine – the Orenda Iroquois – a Tracker, Snowbird Tudor, Zenair, Tiger Moth, and Musketeer.
The real CF-105 Canadian fighter jet — better known as the Avro Arrow — was built in the late 1950s to target Soviet spy planes during the Cold War. The production of the CF-105 was cancelled in February 1958. Six were built and three were flown before all the planes were destroyed — a moment that became known as “Black Friday” in the Canadian aviation industry.
This is the only full-sized replica of the Avro Arrow in existence today. It was built by almost 700 volunteers, associated with the museum.
It is 77.7 feet long, 21 feet high to the tip of the tail and has a wingspan measuring 50 feet.
Coxon said the plane has been in storage at Pearson Airport, sitting outdoors and wrapped in plastic, for the past seven years. A lot of work has been done to clean it up and reattach the tail and wings to get it ready for public viewing.
The replica will be making its public debut at the 31st annual Gathering of the Classics, hosted by Edenvale Classic Aircraft Foundation, on Saturday, August 10 (rain date Sunday, August 11) from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Admission costs $10 for adults, $5 for youth 10-17 and children nine and under are admitted free of charge.
To book flights on classic aircraft available that day, visit www.classicaircraft.ca/vintage-aircraft-flights.
The Foundation is a not-for-profit organization that is accepting donations and is open to visitors on Thursdays.