Wellington Scoop

Working at night – six-month $13m project to resurface runway at Wellington Airport

Report from RNZ
Wellington Airport is taking advantage of the plunge in international flight numbers to bring forward planned runway resurfacing work. It starts this week and will be done overnight to prevent disruption to airline schedules.

The renewal work, which is needed about every decade, was originally slated for summer 2021 into 2022.

Bringing the project forward meant it would have a longer overnight working window enabling it to complete the work more efficiently – in about four months rather than six, subject to weather, said Wellington Airport head of airfield development and delivery Nick Petkov.

More than 200 contractors will remove and replace 35,000 tonnes of asphalt that will be recycled into roading projects around the Capital.

Between September and December, milling and paving work work will be done, with grooving of the surface to improve the water run-off and traction done from December to February.

Fulton Hogan surfacing divisional manager Ben Struthers said work would be done from 10pm until 5.30am – three hours more a night compared to when it was last done in 2009.

“In addition to reducing the project’s duration, this will have quality benefits because longer nightly runs will mean fewer joins in the pavement and a smoother overall surface as a result,” Struthers said.

The airport said it was taking steps to minimise noise and disruption for residents.

These included using noise barriers and acoustic curtains, non-vibrating compactors where possible, using less disruptive reverse beepers on trucks, and stockpiling material on-site so there were fewer night-time truck movements. The work, costing $13.7 million, will be completed in February.

June: Airport delays plans for expansion and upgrade


  1. Dr. Sea Rotmann, 15. September 2020, 8:46

    What would be much greater is if the airport would FINALLY fulfill its duty to all the residents inside the Noise Precinct (over 700 households I believe?) and put noise-cancelling measures like insulation and double-glazing into their homes. We’ve been waiting since 2012 when this first was announced! And didn’t WIAL draw down some of the levy for this work yet? Wish they’d do right JUST ONCE by their many residential neighbours in Rongotai / Miramar / Lyall Bay…

  2. Benny, 15. September 2020, 9:24

    So the work will be done at night, to not interrupt WIAL’s operations and revenue streams, while interrupting residents’ sleep is absolutely fine. Priorities, I guess, coming from a “good neighbour”. I wonder where else work through the night would be tolerated in such highly dense residential area.

  3. bsmith, 15. September 2020, 12:36

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t the airport open in 1959 ?…. kinda hard to miss, I imagine. When exactly are they supposed to program safety maintenance of the runways?

  4. Dr Sea, 15. September 2020, 22:38

    Our house is a lot older than the airport, and that is an incredible unempathetic thing to say to several thousand affected residents! How does that excuse the airport from its legal responsibility to insulate homes in the noise precinct – which they have shunned for almost 10 years? [via twitter]


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