Noi Bai airport completes runway upgrade

By Doan Loan    August 28, 2021 | 04:26 pm PT
Noi Bai airport completes runway upgrade
Workers on the construction site to renovate the 1B runway of Noi Bai International Airport in Hanoi, December 2020. Photo by VnExpress/Ngoc Thanh
Runway 1B at Noi Bai International Airport will return to business on Sept. 9 following completed upgrade.

Work to renovate the runway is part of a large-scale project launched last July to renovate the capital airport.

Late last year, work had been partly completed and the runway has since January been open for aircraft embarkation.

However, the signal light system has only just been installed, meaning planes cannot as yet land on runway 1B.

With 1B back in business, the Noi Bai airport upgrade will enter its second phase, with runway 1A closed from Oct. 1 until early 2022, the Ministry of Transport said Friday.

Runway 1B, which stretches 3,800 meters and spans 45 meters, has had its surface replaced by a new 40-centimeter-thick layer of reinforced concrete. Areas too heavily damaged have been rebuilt from scratch.

The project to upgrade Noi Bai’s runways will cost a total VND2.03 trillion ($87.4 million).

The project also includes three new taxiways, upgrades to existing ones, new indicator lights, a drainage system and other flight management facilities.

Runway 1B had been seriously damaged after 16 years of operation while runway 1A is of better quality thanks to an upgrade six years ago.

Since 2017, Noi Bai has been chronically overloaded, receiving new-generation aircraft with huge loads, which has degraded its runways and taxiways.

The number of passengers and cargo passing through the airport has been increasing by an average 10 percent per year to nearly 26 million passengers in 2018 and about 29 million in 2019. However, the airport is only designed to handle 25 million passengers per year, with domestic terminal T1 having a capacity of 15 million and international terminal T2 10 million.

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