CARLSBAD–Work will begin in April on a new 5,000-foot runway at McClellan-Palomar Airport. County Airports had planned to renovate the existing runway in five phases of 1,000 feet each, but had funding only for the first two. In August, the FAA unexpectedly came forward with funding for the entire runway renovation project, provided the County had its contracts in place by September 30.
The County advertised a contract to include all five phases of construction. Hazard Construction of San Diego submitted the winning bid of $7,895,219.
The airport will close for one week starting Sunday, April 25 at 11:30 p.m. for phase one construction, after which it will reopen for one week of normal flight operations. This alternating schedule will continue until all five phases of runway renovation are complete. This phased construction schedule will also avert an extended closure of the airport. A construction schedule is posted on the DPW web site. Regular construction updates and other information will be available in a bi-weekly newsletter, and available on the Palomar Airport runway website.
The new runway will be 23 inches of soil treated with cement, recycled asphalt grindings from the existing runway, and new asphalt. Expected lifespan will be 20 years. The runway renovation will complement the new 18,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art terminal that opened last year.
Fixed based operators (FBOs) and airport tenants have been offered free aircraft parking at other County airports, and a two-month rent moratorium during construction.
Testing had determined the potential for collapse of the supporting soils and pavement surface of the existing runway, which could lead to catastrophic runway failure.