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August 03, 2010 | General

Closure of runway 16/34 at Edmonton City Centre Airport begins

Crews onsite at 0330 to begin closure process

August 3, 2010 (Edmonton, Alta.)-Edmonton Airports work crews were at Edmonton City Centre Airport (ECCA) early this morning to begin the process of closing runway 16/34.

“In order to ensure the safety of our crews and prevent disruption to operations, some of the work must happen when activity at the airport is minimal,” explains Steve Maybee, Director of Airside Operations.

The work starts today with physical alterations to the airfield and runway. These alterations include placing barricades to prevent access to the runway and painting signage on the runway surface to signal clearly to pilots that the runway is closed.

“There is a protocol we must follow to close a runway,” says Maybee. “This process is in place to ensure the safety of aircraft operators and tenants. It is vital that there be no ambiguity about the status of the runway once the closure process begins.”

The airfield alterations will also ensure tenants have safe and clear access to the remaining runway, which is known as 12/30.

In 2009, City Council directed Edmonton Airports to close runway 16/34. The timing of closure was requested to be after Airfest (June) and the Honda Indy (July). In order to move forward on that direction, a GPS navigation system was installed on runway 12/30 (completed in June 2010). Because of post-Indy cleanup, this week is the first time Edmonton Airports has had the opportunity to begin the runway closure process. The work will continue into the
fall.

MEDIA BACKGROUNDER

Protocol for Runway Closure

The protocol for closing a runway consists of a number of steps to ensure safety and efficiency. The process steps fall under two main areas:

  • Notification
  • Physical alterations to airfield

Notification

  • Airport users and pilots are provided with communication about the runway closure in advance
  • Issuing of multiple Notices to Airmen (NOTAM) and updating of operational manuals

Physical Alterations

  • In order to ensure the safety of work crews and minimize disruption to air traffic at ECCA, some of the work on the physical alterations to the airfield and runway 16/34 began at 0330 on August 03, 2010.
  • The entire runway closure process, which will continue into the fall, includes the following tasks:
    • Deployment of cement barricades and orange safety barrels with lights at all access points to runway 16/34.
    • Deployment of two portable LED X signs at either end of the runway.
    • Painting of five large X’s along the surface of the runway.  Once these are complete, the portable signs will be removed.
    • Removal of runway directional signage.
    • NAV Canada equipment (i.e., Instrument Landing System) equipment will be powered down and removed.
    • Runway lights for 16/34 will be powered down and removed.