Beginning Sunday, September 9th, travelers may notice construction on the airfield, including the closure of our longest runway nearest the terminal, known as 16L/34R. This is happening to take advantage of good weather and to get ready for the opening of the expansion of the North Satellite Modernization project early next year.
We’ve already been at work this spring and summer updating taxiways, replacing concrete panels, and other projects to improve safety and create upgrades where necessary. What comes next will be fixing expansion joints on the touchdown zones at each end of 16L/34R, relocating a taxiway connected to the runway, and upgrading the taxiways near the North Satellite. With the expansion of the North Satellite to the west, we have to adjust the taxiways to allow aircraft movement to safely and efficiently pass by the new facility.
During a major portion of the construction (70 of the 90 days, upgrading taxiway B), the long runway will actually be used as a taxiway for aircraft. Air Traffic Control will have this option available to them to keep traffic flowing. In some cases, during north flow, this could increase your taxi time. During peak periods it may be necessary to taxi aircraft to the north of the airfield and then all the way back to the south end, by use of Taxiway T (Tango) in between the center (16C/34C) and westernmost (16R/34L) runways. This is necessary as the closure of the nearest runway reduces how many aircraft can lineup for takeoff on the south before they create congestion around the terminal gates and block taxiways coming out of gates.
We expect the runway construction, depending on weather, to finish in early December. We appreciate travelers’ patience. Now you’ll know what’s up when you look out your window or see the construction from the terminal.