O’Hare International Airport in the US has shut down one of its diagonal runways despite opposition from lawmakers and residents.
The runway was stripped of its identification numbers, and its markings have been painted over, reported DNA Info.
Chicago Department of Aviation spokesman Owen Kilmer said the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will turn off the runway’s remaining navigational equipment to ensure that no signals are sent to the aircraft.
The closure comes after the implementation of a new state law that allows the airport to operate ten instead of eight runways.
The second diagonal runway at the airport is expected to be shut down by 2020.
The locals have been trying to keep the runway open by contending that it was the only way to reduce the jet noise level over the northwest side.
Fair Allocation in Runways Coalition leader Colleen Cichon-Mulcrone said that the group would continue to press officials to keep all the runways operational.
Aviation commissioner Ginger Evans has termed both the diagonal runways fatally flawed and unsafe as they intersect others and are said to reduce the airport’s efficiency.
The Chicago Department of Aviation released a plan in July that suggested the rotational use of runways at night to distribute the noise evenly across the airport. The plan is yet to be approved by the FAA.
The plan, however, failed to find support among residents living in adjoining areas as most feel that it does not offer any daytime relief for people living on the north and northwest side.