East Midlands Airport

Client Manchester Airports Group

Sector Aviation

Location East Midlands

Value £15m

Galliford Try upgraded the 3km runway at East Midlands Airport while working around its unique flight programme. Operating 24 hours a day and 365 days a year, the airport needed a solution that had minimal impact on users.

A typical refurbishment programme of overnight closures for six months wasn’t feasible. Our solution was to complete the work over seven consecutive 48-hour closures using the alternative asphalt solution BBA, an approach that had never previously been attempted in the UK.

Key challenges of the scheme included its scale and logistical complexity. Each weekend 12,000 tonnes of the old surface was removed and the same quantity of new asphalt laid as well as 1,200 AGLs replaced. Over 350 people were on site as well as 200 individual pieces of plant which were involved in over 2,000 vehicle movements. All staff on site were subject to security checks to allow them to access the airfield via a dedicated new airlock security gate.

A compound the size of 10 football pitches ensured that preparation works and asphalt manufacture could be accommodated close to the site. Three 20m tall high output ashphalt batching plants ensured that the manufacture of asphalt kept pace with the requirement.

The project won the Project of the Year category of the 2017 Construction News Awards.