Taxiway Widening & Overlay
Wellington Airport, Wellington New Zealand
The pavement on Taxiway Alfa was at the end of its serviceable life with the last overlay completed in 2002. Since then, the airport has seen an increase in the aircraft type, the weight of aircraft, and with the addition of larger wide-body aircraft, the need for taxiway geometric improvements. This project addressed each deficiency.
The significant operational constraints meant that Wellington Airport required detailed assurance that the construction risk and construction engineering were expertly managed. The scope of work included utility infrastructure enabling works across the full length of taxiway A with main works consisting of:
Earthworks to increase subgrade strength
Full-strength taxiway widening
New shoulder construction
Grade newly defined taxiway strip
Relocate existing storm water infrastructure
Relocate Airfield Ground Lighting (AGL)
Full width AC overlay
Over the course of 9 months 8,000 tons of AC28, 20,000 m2 of cement base course, and a 50-65 mm overlay totaling 15,000 tons of AC14 was paved on the widened and rehabilitated Taxiway A.
Airport operations staff provided clear guidance of specific airfield constraints by managing aircraft movement and the contractor obeyed all safety requirements. Vogt CE was responsible for interpreting and resolving design and field discrepancies, communicating with the contractor to resolve all field conflicts, and ensuring the airport was returned to a safe operational status at the end of each shift.
Work conducted exclusively at night had major operational challenges and diverse construction and organisational constraints. For example, the precise condition of the subgrade was not known until excavation and pavement milling was completed. By then, a portion of the 9-hour shift had already passed. Immediate and accurate decisions of subgrade quality were required prior to proceeding with subsequent work.
The well-coordinated team safely delivered the project meeting all specification requirements and providing aircraft access to the runway via Taxiway A by 0600 each morning.
Effective communication and teamwork are keys to project success. Our role as the full-time onsite representative and ability to effectively interpret the specification and drawings during the tight night-time construction window when decisions were required immediately were instrumental to project success. Projects under Vogt CE receive prompt and accurate decision making which can make the difference between constructing a taxiway correctly and opening it on time or not.