WEST CHICAGO, Ill. — A capital improvement project to widen and rehabilitate the primary runway at DuPage Airport (KDPA) has been completed ahead of schedule and approximately half a million dollars under budget.
The $11.4 million development allows the general aviation airport to accommodate large business jets, including the Boeing Business Jet, according to airport officials.
Officials project that the widened runway will result in the airport capturing additional growth in the business aviation industry.
Kicking off last April, the project included widening runway 2L-20R from 100 feet to 150 feet – providing aircraft with greater crosswind capability – as well as pavement rehabilitation.
At 7,570 feet long, runway 2L-20R is the longest in Chicagoland outside of O’Hare and handles approximately 70% of the airport’s aircraft operations. Originally scheduled for completion in December, the project officially completed on October 24, 2014, more than one month ahead of schedule.
“With two runways capable of accommodating the largest corporate jets, we’re heavily investing at DuPage in order to build for the future and capture forecasted business aviation growth,” said Executive Airport Director David Bird. “Delivered under budget and ahead of schedule without the use of state of federal dollars, this project demonstrates what can be achieved through outstanding public/private partnerships.”
The airport funded 100% of the project through revenue generated without state or federal funds.
The runway widening also has a sustainable element, airport officials noted. Throughout the course of the project, a significant amount of concrete was removed, crushed and reused as subgrade material for the runway shoulders. About 18,000 tons of crushed concrete was placed underneath shoulder asphalt pavement. Additionally, removed asphalt material is being stored on-site for future use on the airfield.
Additional improvements underway include a new 30,000-square-foot transient hangar designed for storage of G650/Global aircraft, scheduled for completion in 2015.
Earlier this year, DuPage unveiled a new $1.6 million Aircraft Rescue & Fire Fighting (ARFF) station. The 4,700-square-foot station – located closer to the airfield for improved response – operates 24/7 and houses two ARFF vehicles.