Press Release Article


Date: Feb 16, 2012
Press Release Number: 25-2012

High-speed taxiways slated for one of Newark Liberty International Airport’s main runways will help reduce on-ground flight delays, bringing welcome relief to the region’s air travelers. The project, which is scheduled to begin in March, is part of the Port Authority’s overall state-of-good-repair rehabilitation of the runway’s surface.

Angled more gently to allow faster exits from a runway, high-speed taxiways already have proven effective at John F. Kennedy International and other airports to move arriving jets faster to the gates, while maintaining safety. This enables planes awaiting departure on the same runway to take off with less delay. Traditional taxiways are set at significantly sharper angles, forcing planes to take more time exiting the runways due to their need to significantly decrease their speed.

The high-speed taxiways will be added to Newark Liberty’s Runway 4R-22L, which is 10,000 feet long and handles approximately 190,000 takeoffs and landings annually. Runway 4R-22L also will be reconstructed with new asphalt, its electrical system overhauled, and two existing taxiways realigned at an estimated cost of $42 million.

“These improvements at Newark Liberty will help increase the region’s productivity by reducing the time airline passengers remain on the ground, while at the same time creating critically needed construction jobs,’’ said Port Authority Chairman David Samson. “These projects fit in with the agency’s core mission of improving our transportation infrastructure, while helping to generate economic activity during these challenging times.”

“Our goal is to move people as efficiently and safely as possible,” said Port Authority Executive Director Pat Foye. “No one benefits from airline delays, least of all passengers, whether they are traveling for business or pleasure. Our objective in adding high-speed runways is to help more passengers leave their departing city on time so they can arrive at their destination as scheduled.”

“Adding two high speed taxiways at Newark Liberty International Airport and rehabilitating another has two major benefits,” said Bill Baroni, the agency’s deputy executive director. “Not only will we improve the travel experience for more than 33 million annual passengers, but we will also create 270 much-needed construction jobs.”

High-speed taxiways can be viewed as tarmac bottleneck busters, efficiently increasing ground movements of planes while maintaining safety standards. It is anticipated that the improvements would save an average of eight seconds per arriving flight, with saved time cumulative throughout peak travel hours. Time savings for arriving flights then compound by allowing departing planes to get to the runway faster as well.

The addition of the high-speed taxiways and runway rehabilitation will be conducted by Tilcon New York Inc. of Wharton, New Jersey. The Port Authority Board of Commissioners awarded the company the project last week after the company submitted a successful $32.3 million competitive bid on the project last month. Eight contractors had competed for the job.

The Authority anticipates the project will create 270 jobs, $15 million in wages and $64 million in regional economic activity. The work will be staged to minimize disruptions to airport operations. The expected completion date is May 2013.

The Board last week also approved authorization for a $27.1 million Engineered Material Arresting System (EMAS) to be installed at Newark Liberty. The system will prevent planes from overshooting the east end of Runway 11/29 at Newark Liberty and bring it into compliance with the Federal Aviation Administration’s safety requirements.

The system, made of collapsible concrete, improves safety by helping to prevent passenger and crew injuries as well as damage to the aircraft, by slowing planes that overshoot runways. The action provides authorization for the Authority’s executive director to enter into a sole-source $8.1 million contract with a joint venture of Jacobs Engineering Group, Inc. and Engineered Arresting System Corp. (ESCO) to install the system. The project is anticipated to result in 70 direct job years, $6 million in direct wages, with an overall $40 million in economic activity for the project, which is expected to be finished in December 2014.

The Board also approved two other contracts for taxiway rehabilitation projects, one at Newark Liberty and the other at LaGuardia Airport. An $8.1 million contract was awarded to Tilcon New York Inc., a Wharton, New Jersey, company for rehabilitation of portions of four other taxiways at Newark Liberty, as part of a regular maintenance schedule. Work is expected to begin in March and be completed in December. Impact on operations is anticipated to be minimal because other taxiways may be used while work is ongoing.

In addition, a $3.5 million contract awarded to Grace Industries LLC, a Plainview, New York firm, will rehabilitate four taxiways at LaGuardia. Work is expected to commence in March with completion in March 2013.

CONTACT: The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
Ron Marsico (212) 435-7777

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which does not receive tax dollars from either state, operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia, Stewart International and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; the Port Authority-Port Jersey Marine Terminal and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.


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