Bombardier has wrapped up all aircraft assembly work at its Downsview facility in Toronto, closing a chapter in the history of a now largely residential site that had hosted aerospace manufacturing for nearly a century.

The milestone means Bombardier has now shifted all assembly work for its Global line of business jets to a new facility at Toronto Pearson International airport.

On 23 March, Bombardier’s final Downsview-produced aircraft – a Global 7500 with the registration C-GYIN – took off from the airfield and flew to Montreal, according Bombardier and data from flight-tracking website Flightradar24.

Bombardier Global 7500

Source: Bombardier

Bombardier has stopped assembly of Global business jets at the Downsview Toronto site

That jet completed “the last departure from that airfield, which is now closed”, Bombardier adds.

Downsview holds a special place in Canadian aerospace history.

The site had been home to an airfield as far back as the late 1920s, when De Havilland also launched an operation there. It later hosted a Royal Canadian Air Force base.

Bombardier moved into Downsview in 1992 by acquiring De Havilland. It launched production of Global business jets there, and continued producing Dash 8-400 airliners at the site until selling that programme to Longview Aviation Capital in 2019.

In 2018, struggling under the financial weight of its CSeries programme – now the Airbus A220 – Bombardier sold its Global assembly site at Downsview for $635 million to Canada’s Public Sector Pension Investment Board.

Bombardier continued to operate the site under a lease, however, as it began shifting all Global production to the new facility at Pearson airport.

Meanwhile, Longview, under its rebooted De Havilland Canada operation, continued producing Dash 8-400s at Downsview until shuttering the site and ceasing all Dash 8 production in 2022.

A major residential development project called Northcrest is now underway at Downsview.