UK’s Mott MacDonald to help refurbish Macau’s distinctive runway

UK-based Mott MacDonald has been appointed by Macau International Airport to design overlay for its distinctive, single concrete runway that extends 3.36km into the sea.

Mott MacDonald says the upgrade will improve the strength of the runway, which is built on reclaimed land.

This is necessary because aircraft traffic at Macau, a popular tourism and gambling destination, is increasing rapidly.

The airport is served by 30 airlines flying to 44 destinations. In 2015 it received a record 5.8 million passengers and 30,000 tonnes of cargo, an increase of 6.4% and 4.5% respectively compared to 2014.

Also in 2015, there were 2,986 take-offs and landings, an increase of 7.3% over the previous year, and over 55,000 aircraft movements, a 6% increase compared to 2014.

The company will provide detailed design and quantity surveying services, condition surveys and will prepare tender documents for construction. The consultancy will also offer technical support during both the construction and the defects liability periods.

But it will have to fit its work around the airport’s busy schedule.

Jason Wong, Mott MacDonald’s project director, said: "As Macau is a 24-hour airport, the improvement works will be carried out between flights during the night when traffic is less frequent. The runway will then need to be restored to full runway operations in time for peak daily aircraft movements, leaving only a short window for the contractor to carry out their works."

The runway overlay project is due to be completed in 2018.

Image: A passenger jet taxis out to Macau’s distinctive runway, shown here in 2014, which extends 3.36km into the sea (Edwin Leong/Wikimedia Commons)

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