When repaving a 3.0 km-long runway and taxiway at 8 Wing Trenton, Canada’s largest military air mobility base, ensuring the smooth interplay of security, contractors and flying operations has been essential.

“Work of this scope takes 10 times the amount of coordination as usual,” says DCC’s Chris Guernsey, Coordinator, Construction Services.

For example, workers have to be escorted on and off the airfield and activity must stop when dangerous cargo is being loaded nearby. Regular contact between the project team and the air traffic control tower is crucial to keeping people and aircraft at a safe distance at all times.

The $7-million construction contract began in mid-July 2021, when the main taxiway was closed and then upgraded to become a temporary runway in time for the active runway to close in mid-September.

A thick layer of both 20-year-old asphalt surfaces was ground off to allow underlying cracks to be filled prior to new asphalt being laid. In addition, 1,000 small repairs were made to the 300-m concrete turning area at the east end of the runway. Painted airfield markings will be added in mid-November 2021, before freeze-up.

These repairs will extend the life of these essential airfield arteries, Guernsey notes, until a complete rebuild is possible.

Throughout the project, Guernsey has been in constant communication with DND stakeholders in Winnipeg, Ottawa and Trenton, DCC colleagues in Ottawa and Kingston and contractors in Belleville.

These efforts have not gone unnoticed by the DND project manager: “Your efforts working with the contractor [and] finding workarounds for advancing/keeping the project on schedule … are what is leading to this project’s success!”

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