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Wed, Aug 13, 2008

Akron-Canton Airport Celebrates Runway 5/23 Halfway Point

Two Million Yards Of Earth Removed... Only Two Million More To Go!

"Airplanes flying farther." That's the capability officials at Akron-Canton Airport (CAK) look forward to, as they celebrate the halfway point of the extension of Runway 5/23, the airport's main runway.

Community leaders, elected officials, business partners and engineers broke ground Tuesday on the second half of the construction project. Two million yards of earth have already been moved, as part of the extension marking the halfway point. The earthwork is necessary to build up the aircraft landing surface allowing for the extension from 7,600 to 8,200 feet.

Officials say the added pavement will allow aircraft to depart the airport at heavier fuel weights, allowing nonstop flights to the west coast and international destinations like Mexico and the Caribbean.

"This is an exciting milestone," said Rick McQueen, assistant airport director. "Today we are celebrating significant progress towards the completion of CAK 2018, our 10-year, $110 million capital improvement plan. The 5/23 runway project is the cornerstone of CAK 2018 and we are committed to it, to the core. It is important not only to our airport authority but to our airline partners, and our community as well."

"It's a pleasure to celebrate the halfway point in the 5/23 extension project with the airport and community leaders," said Congressman Ralph Regula (R-Navarre, OH). "It has been a pleasure to watch this place grow and thrive for the more than 30 years, and I know that because of projects like this, our airport will be serving this community well for decades to come."

The airport has invested $34 million to date on projects related to the 5/23 extension. An additional $27 million is planned to complete the job by 2010. Significantly, by moving fill from our own property, the project cost was significantly reduced, saving taxpayers $23 million.

Additionally, the work currently being done to move earth to build the runway is one of the largest earthmoving projects in the state of Ohio. Airport personnel note if you were to fill the average truck with nine cubic yards of dirt, four million cubic yards loaded in these trucks would be lined up bumper to bumper from Cincinnati to Cleveland to Toledo and back to Cincinnati four times. The trucks would equal a total of 2,188 miles.

Work to be done in the next half of the 5/23 extension project includes paving the newly built runway surface and adjoining taxiways, relocating and installing instrument landing system (ILS) and upgrading the safety area at the north end of the runway.

FMI: www.akroncantonairport.com

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