b'New RunwayPAVES WAY FOR FUTURE GROWTH By Sherri Gardner Howell upgrade workredoing taxiways tocapability. The other runway could provide better flow, instrument land- not operate under reduced-visibility For the past 10 years, a team ofing systems, sightlines, bad weathersituations.engineers and project managers atcapabilities. This is us relooking at theThe answer? Upgrade the other the Metropolitan Knoxville Airportwhole system. runway before shutting down the Authority have lived in a dominoEric Williamson, MKAAs seniorfirst one.work-world. engineer and manager of the runwayOther dominoes came into play Not a chaotic, tiles falling allproject, says that the project changedas well, but, in the end, the multi-around environment, but a preci- from runway maintenance to theyear project will have an even better sion, planned and orchestrated build.scope of today when the survey inoutcome that originally planned, and When the last domino clicks into2010 came back with numbers thatthe disruption at the airport has been place, the Wow factor for airportindicated 65 percent of the concretemanageable.travel will be evident, especially whenslabs on 5L/23R had to be replacedThe new runway will make a dif-viewed from above. and another 10 percent was in ques- ference in the kinds of planes that The endeavor, shorthanded thetion. can fly in to McGhee Tyson. The runway project, currently has aThats when Bryan and the man- 10,000-foot runway provides the global cost of $120 million. In brief,agement team said, Were going toability for aircraft to weigh more, the airport authority is replacing run- stop this right here and switch gearswhich translates to more passengers, way 5L/23R, which was showing itsto look at a 100 percent runway re- more cargo, more fuel; which allows age back in 2009. Taking a hard lookplacement. From there, things reallybigger aircraft in the long run or at the expected service life back thengot interesting! longer destinations for those airlines started the party whose outcome willMcGhee Tyson Airport has twoor the guard, says Williamson. The now be a new, 10,000-foot run- runways. With 5L/23R shut down,project began to address runway way and an update to the second,the second runway would have towear-and-tear for on-going safety 5R/23L, runway. pick up the load. protocol. That will certainly have Bryan White, vice president of en- It wasnt so much volume, asbeen addressed, but so much more is gineering and planning at MKAA, ex- capability, says Williamson. Thealso being accomplished.plains: We arent just replacing therunway getting the expansion hasCompletion date is expected to be pavement and lengthening a runway.our ILSinstrument landing systemby the end of 2021.There are operational efficiencies on both ends and is our high-pre-that all tie-in to making this kind ofcision runway. It also had all-weather www.BlountPartnership.com 43'