Every year, the Georgia Airports Association (GAA) hands out awards for the best commercial airport project and general aviation project. This year, RS&H projects swept up both honors.
RS&H’s Columbus Airport runway project earned Commercial Project of the Year from the GAA, while McKinnon St. Simons Island Airport claimed General Aviation Project of the Year accolades for RS&H’s runway work.
RS&H Senior Aviation Engineer Brian Thompson was the project manager at both airports.
“It’s a tremendous compliment to our team and to our ability to design and produce construction of that magnitude,” Thompson said. “One project was a model of efficiency, and the other was breaking new ground.”
The Columbus Airport was recognized for RS&H’s rehabilitation and completion of Runway 13/31. Improvements included rehabilitation of the asphalt runway pavement, installation of new runway lights, installation of guidance signs, installation of a newly lighted windsock at the midpoint of the airport, and associated electrical work. The work performed by RS&H was efficient, as the project finished nearly $100,000 under budget.
McKinnon St. Simons Island Airport earned the general aviation award for RS&H’s work on Runway 16/34, which incorporated cold-in-place asphalt pavement recycling as an alternative to full-depth re-construction. The project is among the first uses of this technology on an airfield in Georgia.
The cold-in-place recycling process entails using a train of equipment to convert previously-used materials into the foundation layer, all without removing, transporting, heating, or storing tons of asphalt. This technique saves time and money and creates a smaller environmental footprint.
“It was a perfect solution,” Thompson said. “Not only did cold-in-place recycling help us work within a tight budget and timeframe, but it also limited the amount of truck traffic coming onto the island. On a small resort island, those extra trucks would have had a significant impact.”
Repaving the runway was just part of a three-contract airfield rehabilitation program at St. Simons Island. Projects included rehabilitation of the runway pavement; new runway and taxiway marker lighting; partial rehabilitation of the shoulder pavement; new lighted airfield and directional signage; a new precision path approach indicator (PAPI) guidance system, and a new supplemental wind cone. Numerous electrical upgrades, including new cabling and conduit, were also installed.