October 2, 2023
U.S. Allocates $201 Million for Airport Lighting Projects
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82 airports nationwide to benefit from bipartisan infrastructure law
More than $201 million in funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, signed into law in 2021, is allocated for airfield lighting system enhancements at 82 airports across the United States. These projects are primarily aimed at acquiring and installing new lighting systems for runways and taxiways, specifically designed to enhance safety during adverse weather conditions and low visibility, including nighttime operations.
Last week, U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg emphasized the importance of these lighting upgrades, stating, "We're acting to improve lighting systems at 82 airports, an important part of keeping aircraft moving safely, no matter the time of day or weather." He also highlighted these investments as part of the government’s broader efforts to enhance American airports for both immediate and long-term benefits.
Projects announced last week include:
$30.6 Million to Denver International Airport in Colorado to reconstruct Runway 17L/35R and Taxiway P lighting systems.
$3.4 Million to Rogue Valley International Airport in Medford, Oregon to install lighted visual aids used to indicate a temporary closed runway that meet Federal Aviation Administration standards for use on the airfield to prevent runway incursions; a new lighting vault to meet additional airfield lighting needs and to reconstruct the existing Runway 14/32 lighting system.
$2.6 Million to Boeing Field/King County International in Seattle, Washington to install elevated runway guard lights for Runway 14R/32L to enhance safety.
$2 Million to Dickinson/Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport in North Dakota to install replacement Runway 7/25 end approach path identifier lights, making the airport more accessible by improving approaches to the runway ends and reconstructing Taxiway D lighting.
Shannetta R. Griffin, P.E., Associate Administrator for Airports, stressed the significance of these improvements, particularly in ensuring pilot safety while navigating runways and taxiways. These enhancements align with the FAA's ongoing commitment to runway safety initiatives, which were discussed in a Safety Summit held in March, bringing together industry leaders to address safety concerns and take necessary actions.
The FAA has also introduced various runway safety technologies, including Runway Status Lights to warn pilots of unsafe runway conditions, Airport Surface Detection Equipment (ASDE-X) for enhanced surveillance, and ASDE-X Taxiway Arrival Prediction to predict and prevent potential runway issues.
The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act represents a substantial investment in the nation's infrastructure. It covers a wide range of initiatives, from roads and bridges to public transit and airports, with a focus on safety, climate action, environmental justice, and job creation. This comprehensive law aims to ensure long-term sustainable growth and prosperity for all Americans.