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The Federal Aviation Administration today announced it has reserved $10 million for a runway project at Danville Regional Airport.
The money will be used to resurface the airport’s primary runway. In addition, a hump will be removed from this runway that impedes visibility for takeoffs and landings.
“These changes will bring the airport into compliance with current federal standards for runway design,” said Marc Adelman, director of transportation services for the city of Danville. “These actions are required for all airports throughout the country seeking federal airport capital improvement funds.”
Adelman said the primary runway has not been resurfaced since 1990. Five years ago, he said the airport sought to obtain federal funding for the resurfacing. “Without federal assistance, the resurfacing work would cost the city of Danville several million dollars to complete,” Adelman said.
The FAA then informed the city that other modifications must be completed simultaneously to correct existing runway deficiencies and bring the airport in compliance with current standards.
“The Danville Regional Airport Commission supports making the modifications to facilitate safe operations and concurs that these changes are necessary to secure federal funding for future development efforts,” Adelman said.
Other safety improvements involve replacing the majority of the drainage system along the runway to redirect water away from the edge of pavement.
With the money now reserved, the city now will make a formal grant application.
Once the grant is awarded and construction begins, Adelman said the improvements will take approximately 18 months to complete. Adelman said 3,000 feet of runway will be accessible during the majority of the construction timeframe.
The instrument landing system will be impacted during construction.
The modifications to improve visibility on the north end of the runway will impact the signal of a navigational aid that is positioned on a platform and located adjacent to U.S. 58. “This navigational aid provides pilots with instrument landing data to locate the runway centerline,” Adelman said. “Since the signal will be affected by runway modifications, the FAA concluded that it should be relocated toward the south and detached from the end of the runway to be in compliance with jet blast separation distance requirements. These conditions mandate that the runway length must be reduced to satisfy safety criteria.”
Adelman said the FAA also determined that current operations do not support the full length of the runway, and as a result, the length of the runway will be reduced from 6,500 feet to approximately 5,893 feet and the width of the runway will be reduced from 150 feet to 100 feet.
“These adjustments will not impact the vast majority of the operations currently completed at the Danville Regional Airport, and the Virginia Department of Aviation approved supplemental grant funding to ensure turning movements for large corporate jets would not be adversely impacted due to related changes,” Adelman said.