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Runway Closure at Sea-Tac Begins April 1

Upgrade work scheduled for 45 days - first of two projects
March 29, 2016

SEATTLE – The Port of Seattle will be closing the longest runway (designated 16L/34R) at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport on April 1 for an estimated 45 days for several upgrades. The closure is for the easternmost runway closest to the terminal, one of two closures planned over the next several months. The temporary closures are not expected to have major impact on flight schedules, passenger traffic, or airport operations.

Upgrades will include routine maintenance, restriping (painting) and replacing blast pads at the end of the runway to maintain federal compliance. Blast pads are portions constructed on either end of the runway to reduce the erosion of the earth by jet blast on takeoff.

Beginning on June 1, Sea-Tac’s center runway (16C/34C) will close for an estimated 21 days for pavement and lighting upgrades along with restriping. Additionally, work will be done to airplane taxiways and adjacent roads for emergency response vehicles.

The projects are part of Sea-Tac’s maintenance and compliance operations. All three of Sea-Tac’s runways will have been constructed or rebuilt within the last eight years. Sea-Tac’s third runway (designated as 16R/34L) was built in 2008, while the longest runway (16L/34R) was reconstructed in 2009.

During construction, all takeoffs and landings will be directed to the airport’s two other runways.

Runway Fast Facts:

  • Runway 16L-34R is Sea-Tac’s longest runway, 11,901 in length
  • The center runway, 16C/34C, is the oldest runway at Sea-Tac having been built in 1969 and reconstructed in 2015. It is 9,426’ in length and has an estimated lifespan of 40 years
  • Sea-Tac’s west (third) runway 16R/34L is 8,500’
  • More than 1,000 takeoffs and landings occur on the airfield daily
  • Detailed plans are in place to minimize conflicts between construction and aircraft operations

About Seattle-Tacoma International Airport

Operated by the Port of Seattle, Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA, KSEA) is ranked as the 13th busiest U.S. airport, serving nearly 42.3 million passengers and more than 332,000 metric tons of air cargo in 2015. With a regional economic impact of more than $16.3 billion in business revenue, Sea-Tac generates 171,796 jobs (109,924 direct jobs) representing over $2.8 billion in direct earnings and more than $565 million in state and local taxes. Twenty-four airlines serve 77 non-stop domestic and 24 international destinations.

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