Cedar Rapids closes runway for reconstruction - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Cedar Rapids closes runway for reconstruction

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL)-- Among routine traffic flowing in and out of the Eastern Iowa Airport, workers are embarking on the largest single season construction project in the airport's history.

"We did have some areas where we're starting to experience a little more maintenance issues," said director of operations Sara Mau.  "We have the window, we have the funding, we're going to do the full reconstruction."

The main runway is getting a nearly $22 million overhaul.  Friday, workers began the process of tearing up 7,600 feet of runway 9-27.

"We're actually taking down the full depth, we're going down to the dirt," Mau said.

Then, crews will begin building up the new runway.  Officials plan to have the project completed by September.

"This will be the last renovation that we'll need to make on this runway for the next 25 years," said Don Swanson, Director of Finance and Administration.  "It will be a good project, and it's going to serve the airport for a long time to come."

The reconstruction is the final phase of a $47 million project, $40 million of which is funded by the Federal Aviation Administration.

City leaders are applauding the airport commission for the economic benefits that come with the project.  Two hundred workers are assigned to the project, many from local businesses.

"It's going to continue to put us in a superior situation to recruit jobs and people," said Cedar Rapids mayor Ron Corbett.  "Short term, it's going to help a lot of businesses and a lot of people this summer as this project gets done."

Officials expect the large project to have a significant impact on the surrounding community by the time it's all said and done.

The airport has converted a parallel taxiway into a temporary runway during construction.

Airport officials are not expecting any significant delays this summer.

Online Reporter:  Jason Epner

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