Runway Rehabilitation & Closure
The Durango-La Plata County Airport (DRO) will be rehabilitating Runway 3/21 in September 2022. This important asphalt maintenance project will extend the life of the runway surface, ensuring safe and uninterrupted airport operations at DRO can continue for years before additional runway maintenance is required. The project design is currently 90% complete, with bidding planned for January 2022. As a single runway airport, construction for this project will have significant operational impacts.
A full runway closure is planned for:
Wednesday, Sept. 7 - Friday, Sept. 16, 2022
During this 10-day period, the runway will be closed to all fixed-wing aircraft takeoffs and landings, including commercial airline, firefighting, and emergency medical operations. Airlines will not be selling tickets for travel during this period.
The airport and its engineering team have designed the project and runway closure to occur for the shortest duration possible, and airport staff have worked diligently to find a timeframe when this closure will have the smallest cumulative impact on the surrounding community. There is truly no good time to close a runway, but the airport has worked with many local organizations to arrive at this timeframe, which falls after Labor Day and peak summer travel and wildfire seasons, as well as major local festivals and events.
Travelers may consider alternate air travel options during the 10-day runway closure. Regional airports with commercial airline service include Cortez Municipal Airport (CEZ), Montrose Regional Airport (MTJ), and Albuquerque International Sunport (ABQ).
Runway 3/21 is a grooved asphalt runway, and the pavement needs rehabilitation. The last pavement inspection in 2018 indicated a Pavement Condition Index (PCI) of 59 and is projected to degrade to a PCI of 52 by 2021. The pavement distresses noted by the inspection are consistent with recent site visits by the airport’s engineering firm and include localized alligator cracking in few areas, block cracking, longitudinal and transverse cracking, as well as raveling and weathering. The last pavement maintenance project on the runway was a crack seal and seal coat in 2016. It is recommended that a mill and overlay be performed on Runway 3/21 and is appropriate for the current existing condition of the runway pavement.
The design of the Runway 3/21 mill and overlay project includes the runway pavement area (150-foot width) as well as the taxiway connector pavement up to the holding position pavement markings. The estimated 3-inch mill and overlay area is approximately 196,210 square yards. This project will include new runway lighting and signage as well as new runway pavement markings and asphalt grooving after placement of the new asphalt pavement. If enough funding is available, this project will also include seal coat of the runway shoulders and seal coat and new pavement markings at the blast pads at each end of the runway.