After Nearly 8 Years And $1.3 Billion This Runway Is Almost Ready For Aircraft
Author: Australis Gifts Date Posted:17 December 2019
It has taken a long time and a lot of money but the commisioning of Brisbane Airport's (BNE) new runway is just months away.
Construction of Brisbane Airport's second runway commenced in 2012, however planning for the new runway started back in the early 1970's. The new runway is 2km from and parallel to the existing runway. Terminal buildings are now inbetween the runways so taxiing aircraft do not have to cross either runway to access passenger terminals. The runway is 3.3km long and 60m wide and there are 12km of accompanying taxiways at a width of 25m. Built at sea level on an area of sediment deposited from the Brisbane River as the river entered Moreton Bay - historically part of the Brisbane River delta. The first years from 2012 were about site preparation, dredging sand from Moreton Bay and placing it around the site. More than 11,000,000 cubic metres of sand were dredged from the bay. From 2014-2017 the sand was left to settle and compact underlying soils to form a solid base upon which the runway could be constructed. Commencement of construction of the runway itself did not occur until 2017. The new runway surface is aircraft grade asphalt. Asphalt is used on the runway as it is flexible enough to take the weight of a landing aircraft and can be easily maintained, while the 12km of taxiways are topped with concrete that can take the weight of a fully laden stationary aircraft awaiting clearance for takeoff. More than 100,000 tonnes of asphalt and 380,000 tonnes of concrete were used in the construction of the runway and taxiways.
Navigational aids, lighting, signage, operations roads, drainage, and security fencing are just some of the other work that has taken place over the past nearly eight years. An Instrument Landing System (ILS) and a High Intensity Approach Lighting System (HIAL) are located at both ends of the runway. The airfield ground lighting system is made up of approximately 2,000 individual 100% LED Category 1 lights - the first such system in the Southern Hemisphere.
The new runway will effectively double the capacity of aircraft movements at the 24 hour 7 days a week Brisbane Airport. Combined with the existing runway the airport will have the capacity to receive 50 arriving aircraft per hour. At a cost of approx. $1.3 billion the new airport runway is on track for completion and opening in mid 2020.
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