Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport
- Apron Replacment 1, 2, 3, 5, and 9
Prime Engineering is currently undertaking the second of two projects to replace apron taxiway pavement at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. In total, more than a million square feet of pavement has been or is being replaced.
The initial project entailed developing temporary aircraft movement and parking plans; conducting planning and coordination meetings with air carrier and airport operations staff; and preparing construction drawings and specifications to replace pavement on two major airfield ramps. The 15-phase construction project, which featured an innovative new pavement design and a project schedule designed to minimize airfield disruption, was completed three months ahead of schedule and $1.6 million under budget.
Prime implemented a pavement design technique that replaced the existing two-layer pavement (22 inches thick: 16 inches of Portland Cement Concrete [PCC] atop 6 inches of Cement Treated Base [CTB]) with a one-layer composition (22 inches of new PCC) atop 6 inches of soil-treated subgrade. Not only was this replacement pavement design sturdier than the original pavement composition—thereby reducing airfield debris and ongoing maintenance—but it also reached its strength more quickly, drastically reducing construction time. Additionally, as part of the renovation process, Prime Engineering replaced the entire underdrain system for the new aircraft taxiways, further extending the pavement lifespan.
To avoid hindering airport operations due to ramp closures, Prime divided the pavement replacement project schedule into 15 phases, allowing all but small sections of the ramps to remain open and causing a minimum number of passenger loading gates to be closed during construction. Construction work occurred on a 24-hour-per-day, 7-day-per-week basis, with minimal disruption to airfield operations. This phased construction plan proved to be very successful. Efficiency in operations and scheduling allowed the project to be completed in approximately six days per project phase instead of the allotted 15 days.
The end result: A model for planning, engineering, and executing aviation projects on a vast scale. This model was so successful that the second project— replacement of pavement on Ramps 2, 3, 5, and 9—is following the same process.