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August 23, 2021updated 02 Sep 2022 3:20pm

San Francisco Airport completes runway renovation project

The latest repaving is expected to bring benefits for at least a decade.

San Francisco International Airport (SFO) in the US has reopened its longest runway, 28 Right, after the completion of renovation works.

In January 2021, the airport announced plans to close Runway 28R for four months to repave the surface layer.

This latest repaving is expected to last for at least a decade.

The Golden Gate Constructors joint venture (JV) between DeSilva Gates Construction and Graniterock secured the contract for this $149m project.

The airport will continue to execute the auxiliary work, including taxiway and lighting improvements, while all runways will be opened for operational use.

During the four-month closure, SFO paved the runway, laid over 96.56km of cabling for tarmac lighting infrastructure, and deployed more than 2,000ft of pipes for drainage.

Each day, the airport coordinated more than 1,000 truck deliveries onto the tarmac.

Now, the project team will continue supplementary work at the north-west end of the airport such as the installation of new lighting and taxiway geometry improvements.

From 8 September to 4 October 2021, Runway 28 Left will be temporarily shortened by nearly 3,500ft.

This will give adequate space to crew members for completing the work while providing the necessary runway length for aircraft.

During this period, no departing flights will take off over the project site as the runway will be utilised only for landing airplanes.

The airport stated that this temporary arrangement is not expected to lead to any significant flight delays during unfavourable weather conditions.

Originally scheduled to occur next year, the repaving project was accelerated due to reduced flight schedules resulting from the Covid-19 pandemic, thereby minimising the extent of delays and cancellations caused by the runway closures.

Last October, the airport concluded an accelerated project to modernise an area where several runways interconnect.

SFO noted that Runway 28 Right was last repaved in 2009.

Earlier this year, the airport and United Airlines announced plans to trial SITA’s Smart Path biometric solution for domestic travellers on selected flights.

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