A critical runway (JFK) New York’s John F. Kennedy International Airport officially re-opened this week following a complete overhaul that began earlier this year.
JFK runway 13L-31R, which handles nearly half of JFK’s arriving planes, was closed for concrete repaving that widened the runway by 33 percent and quadrupled its useful lifespan. The project also replaced electrical systems with state-of-the-art infrastructure, including energy efficient and long-lasting LED lights. And a new high-speed taxiway will improve operational efficiency and reduce runway occupancy time per arrival.
The 10,000-foot-long runway, which handles nearly half of JFK’s arriving planes, was entirely rebuilt and widened by 50 feet to accommodate the world’s largest aircraft. This project was completed with a specialized concrete for long-term durability that will minimize future operational impacts and meet current Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) design standards. The concrete application has a 40-year lifespan, four times longer than the previous asphalt paving.
The rehabilitation project also called for the replacement of obsolete electrical systems with new state-of-the-art infrastructure, including energy efficient and long-lasting LED lights.
The new runway and high-speed taxiway also will improve operational efficiency and reduce runway occupancy time per arrival. Time-savings are cumulative and are estimated to save passengers approximately 1,000 hours annually in delays and taxiing time, for a combined savings to airlines and passengers of about $9 million.
The project is the result of a successful collaboration among the Port Authority, the FAA, and the airlines in planning for and completing the project with minimal impact on the flying public.
The runway project is part of a comprehensive Port Authority program of airport infrastructure improvements focused on enhanced safety and reduced flight delays. In addition to JFK, high-speed taxiways at Newark Liberty International Airport are being planned, as is the expansion of the aeronautical operations areas.
“We are pleased to complete this project on time and within budget, and we appreciate the cooperation and collaboration from the FAA, our airline partners, terminal operators and surrounding communities,” said Port Authority Aviation Director Huntley A. Lawrence. “Reopening this newer, wider, and more resilient runway will improve traffic flow and enable JFK to better serve the 62 million travelers who pass through the airport each year”