Wellington to reconstruct apron

Wellington Airport’s apron taxiway is to undergo major reconstruction for the first time since the New Zealand facility opened in 1959.

The apron taxiway, the paved area between the runway and airport terminal at Wellington Airport, has reached the end of its design life and must be resurfaced to ensure the ongoing safety and efficiency of aircraft operations. The project will take approximately 18 months, with full site works starting this week.

“When the apron was first built in 1959, aircraft were much smaller and lighter. Over the years we have resurfaced the area and carried out maintenance as required, but we now need to do a complete reconstruction for resilience and to meet future capacity requirements,” said Wellington Airport general manager of infrastructure John Howarth.

“For operational reasons, some work must happen at night and where this is the case, we will ensure our project teams and contractors are taking all steps possible to minimise disruption to our surrounding residents. This includes using the most efficient equipment and noise screens to shield machinery during operation, and regularly communicating with site crews to avoid unnecessary noise during the works,” he added.

In addition to replacing the existing taxiway, the airport is carrying out additional improvements, including installing a new airfield ground lighting system and a new stormwater system to enable the airport to better manage and treat stormwater run-off from the airport into the nearby stormwater network.

Wellington Airport has partnered with Fulton Hogan and GHD to deliver the works. Fulton Hogan recently completed major runway resurfacing works at Wellington and GHD oversaw the installation of state-of-the-art runway sensors to enable pilots to more accurately calculate an aircraft’s landing or take off performance. Both projects were completed with no disruption to airline schedules and limited disruptions to surrounding residents.

Wellington Airport has engaged the Air Noise Management Committee, which includes local residents, aviation industry and Wellington City Council representatives, on the construction noise management plan.