Maine’s Portland Jetport Will Close Runway For Just Under Two Months This Spring
If you live in Maine then you're certainly familiar with the state's largest airport, the Portland International Jetport. And, like most Mainers, you've had travelled somewhere (hopefully warmer) from one of its terminals.
But what happens when (like all Maine roads) the runway gets towards the end of its useful life and needs to be repaired? Why, you shut it down and fix it of course! And no, they can't do it like they do on Maine roads by just having a flagger with a 'STOP' 'SLOW' sign waving planes through a single lane construction zone... it doesn't work that way.
If you were to look at an aerial shot of the Jetport, you'd swear it only has two runways- but technically there are four. You'll see two large separate strips of pavement that are obviously runways, but did you know that depending on the direction you're taking off or landing from dictates WHICH runway you're on?
According to AirNav.Com, the Jetport's primary runway is 11/29. That means that when you're inbound to land from the bay side, you're coming in on 11. But, if you're coming in to land from over the city in the other direction to land, that same strip of pavement becomes runway 29. Cool, huh?
The primary runway (11/29) are the ones being shut down for renovation and upkeep. This 7200 foot long by 150 foot wide strip of pavement is the airports primary runway that all big air traffic takes off and lands from. Worry not, however, the airport has a backup (slightly smaller) runway.
The backup runway, 18/36, is 6100 feet long by 150 feet wide and will act as the primary runway this spring while crews work to upgrade and resurface 11/29. As far as travelers are concerned, you won't really notice much difference. However, Portland residents can expect some temporary changes.
Because the secondary runways point the opposite directions of the primary, air traffic will have to come in for their final approaches over parts of the city that they didn't used to. Though it's only temporary, it could cause some mild disruptions for some residents who aren't used to the noise of jets.
According to WGME 13, the primary runway closure will take place from April 18th through June 13th. The cost to complete the project is approximately $13,770,000 and is will be paid for out of the Airport and Airways Trust Fund, which is funded through taxes and fees on airline tickets.
For more information, click here to access the Portland International Jetport's website.
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