Leaders at the Grissom Air Reserve Base leaders say they are working with Miami County officials to lessen the impact of a runway repair project. The $3.2 million initiative is expected to close the runway for 45 days.
March 18, 2014
Grissom Air Reserve Base, Ind. — The 434th Air Refueling Wing announced today that Grissom’s runway will be temporarily closed for planned construction starting June 1.
“We are doing this to prevent buckling of the runway due to thermal expansion,” said John Robison, 434th Civil Engineer Squadron chief engineer. “The pavement heaves up during the summer time, so we are going to put in expansion joints in the pavement that allow it to move around and prevent an un-level pavement surface.”
Robison added that the estimated $3.2 million project is currently projected to close Grissom's runway for 45 days.
“When we initially looked at these repairs, the projects were spread out over some length of time,” said Col. Don Buckley, 434th ARW commander. “We've worked really hard to consolidate these as much as possible so we limit the time our runway is closed.”
The repairs will allow the 12,500-foot runway to continue to be used by both military and civilian aviation for many years to come, said Robison.
The last time Grissom’s runway was closed for repair was in 2004.
The goal, Buckley said, is to complete these vital repairs as quickly as possible to have as little down time and negative impact as possible to both the military mission and civilian aviation at Grissom.
“We've been working very closely with Jim Tidd, (Miami County Economic Development Authority director), as well as the local aviation entities on Grissom to be as flexible as we possibly can,” Buckley continued. “At the end of the day, these repairs are absolutely necessary and will benefit both military and civilian aviation for years to come.”
During the construction, the 434th ARW’s 16 KC-135R Stratotanker aircraft will be operating from another Air Force base in the Midwest. As those plans are finalized, additional information will be released.
The 434th ARW at Grissom ARB is the largest KC-135R unit in the Air Force Reserve Command.
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Source: Grissom Air Reserve Base