28 February, 2024

East Midlands Airport upgrading taxiways and runway....

Most people visiting East Midlands Airport (EMA) won’t give a second thought to its runway and taxiways, but that doesn’t make them any less important for the smooth and safe running of operations.

Photo EMA  Photo EMA

That’s why EMA is carrying out upgrades to a section of its airfield that is the equivalent of 100 football pitches of tarmac, as part of its £120m investment programme over the next five years.

A dedicated team of airfield engineers, designers, project managers and contractors work tirelessly all year round to ensure these crucial surfaces are maintained to the highest standards. These projects are among the largest, most intensive and potentially disruptive works that airports undertake. They are meticulously planned to ensure little or no disruption to passengers and cargo operators at the airport, using short periods of closures for contractors to carry out the work.

The latest work in the improvement programme has been completed on a section used by cargo aircraft known as Taxiway Bravo, which was first laid using large concrete slabs 24 years ago. These have become due for replacement over time due to continuous use and exposure to the elements. Cargo operations at EMA have been growing, as has the size and weight of cargo planes, prompting the need to replace 400 tonnes of the concrete slabs with a more flexible asphalt surface.

The increased flexibility under the weight of heavy cargo aircraft will reduce wear and tear to the taxiway, while providing a smoother surface for pilots and their cargo and improving the overall safety and efficiency of airfield operations.

EMA’s Capital Delivery team collaborated with Airport Operations, Security and Airfield Safeguarding to ensure the project went ahead safely without impacting on the ongoing operation.

EMA’s Asset Development Director Brian McCoubrey said: “This investment underlines our commitment to maintaining the highest standards of safety and efficiency in air travel.

“These projects are complex and present logistical challenges, but we are committed to minimising inconvenience to our customers while they are underway. The improvements are crucial for the safety and comfort of passengers choosing to fly from EMA and for the seamless functioning of our significant air cargo operation.”

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