Until 1974, Pacific Western Airlines had its head office in
Vancouver, British Columbia, but it played a very significant
role in providing air transportation throughout Alberta and the
north. When it appeared that the New Democratic Party (NDP)
government in British Columbia was going to take the airline
over, the Lougheed government in Alberta bought a controlling
share of the airline and moved the head office to Calgary and
the maintenance work to Edmonton.
In 1983, the government made the decision not to continue its
role in Pacific Western Airlines, and sold their shares back to
private investors. When Pacific Western Airlines and Canadian
Airlines were in financial difficulties following this
privatization, the Alberta government assisted financially.