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New Runways at Three Major U.S. Airports Add Capacity, Reduce Weather Delays, Just in Time for the Holiday Travel Season

New Runways at Three Major U.S. Airports Add Capacity, Reduce Weather Delays, Just in Time for the Holiday Travel Season

DENVER, 20 November 2008 – Runways at four international airports and one major military facility have recently opened across the United States. From coast to coast, CH2M HILL, a global full-service engineering, procurement, construction, and operations firm, helped clients meet the needs of the traveling public and ensure military readiness.

Thursday, November 20, marked an aviation milestone, when new runways opened at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, and Dulles International Airport in Washington D.C.

“Having three major runways open on the same day is unprecedented,” says Mike Kennedy, president of CH2M HILL’s Transportation Business Group. “We are extremely proud of our involvement with these projects to improve efficiencies, increase capacity, and reduce air traffic delays. The fact that they will open in time to support increased holiday travel is an additional benefit.”

CH2M HILL served as the design manager for O’Hare International Airport’s Runway 9L-27R, which opens on time as the first new runway at the airport since 1971. By enabling triple simultaneous approaches in inclement weather, this east-west runway is expected to significantly reduce weather delays at the nation’s second-busiest airport. It will provide significant additional capacity as part of the overall $6.6 billion O’Hare Modernization Program. A sustainable design manual completed for the program has been recognized by Congress and the American Association of Airport Executives for the leadership it provides in aviation sustainability programs.

CH2M HILL is a primary partner on the program management team for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport’s Capital Improvement Program, which includes construction of Runway 16R-34L. This new 8,500-foot long runway is expected to cut flight delays in half. From conceptual design through project completion, CH2M HILL’s role as program manager includes project controls, design management, and construction management. For the runway, CH2M HILL had construction management responsibilities. Final construction for the runway included 266,000 square yards of 17-inch runway and 16-inch taxiway concrete pavement, 35,000 tons of asphalt pavement for shoulders and service roads, extensive stormwater systems, and a 24-inch fire suppression loop.

Washington, D.C.
CH2M HILL was a significant contributor to the design of Dulles International Airport’s Runway 1L-19R. The new 9,400-foot long, 150-foot wide north-south runway is the airport’s fourth runway, but the only new runway constructed since the airport was built in the 1960s. The runway was built on a 675-acre site and involved 2.5 million cubic yards of earthwork, 610,000 square yards of Portland cement concrete pavement, 3 miles of paved roadway, and 2.5 miles of gravel roadway.

Edwards Air Force Base
A CH2M HILL joint venture served as the design-builder for the reconstruction of the 300-foot-wide, 15,000-foot-long main runway at Edwards Air Force Base, Calif. Completed three months ahead of schedule, the runway opened Oct. 31 and serves as a mission-critical runway for flight testing all military and combat aircraft. It’s also an alternate landing site for the space shuttle. The project’s thorough safety program resulted in the project team of more than 1,500 workers logging more than 400,000 hours without a lost-time accident.

Los Angeles
CH2M HILL provided construction management services for the South Airfield Improvement Program to improve airfield safety at Los Angeles International Airport, the nation’s third-busiest airport. The two key projects consisted of the relocation of Runway 07R-25L, which opened in April 2007, and construction of a new center taxiway, which was completed in June 2008. The runway has received top project awards from Construction Management Association of America Southern California Chapter, California Construction magazine, and the California Transportation Foundation.

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