Graham Kilmer

Milwaukee Mitchell Airport Recycling Runway Concrete

The airport is currently in the middle of a $10.6 million runway resurfacing project.

By - Aug 20th, 2021 01:59 pm
General Mitchell International Airport

General Mitchell International Airport

Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport is reconstructing one of its two main runways that service commercial airliners, and it’s going to recycle the old concrete for other projects in the region.

The $10.6 million project will involve tearing up the existing runway, and crushing the concrete into finer material called “breaker run.” The runway is the main east-west runway used by commercial airlines at the airport. It’s planned to be closed until mid-November for the project.

The airport is owned by Milwaukee County, but user fees, not public tax levy, is being used to fund the resurfacing. Zignego Group, a construction company based in Waukesha, was contracted for the project.

The crushed concrete taken from the runway is being repurposed for road construction projects in southeastern Wisconsin. “Recycling these materials on-site at MKE and using them in nearby projects minimizes the need for trucking and fuel while preventing wear and tear on roads and trucks,” the airport said in a statement.

Any of the “breaker run” left over from road construction projects will be used as fill underneath a taxiway at the airport. Airport Director Brian Dranzik said in a statement, “We’re thrilled to replace the primary runway pavement in a way that is clean, green, and cost-effective for the Airport.”

This project is the first time in more than 40 years that the runway has been resurfaced. Runways are regularly inspected to determine maintenance schedules, said Harold Mester, a spokesperson for the airport. “The time frame varies based on a number of factors, including environmental conditions and the size of aircraft that typically uses each runway.”

But, with regular maintenance, Mester said, “these runway surfaces will perform well for many decades.”

One thought on “Milwaukee Mitchell Airport Recycling Runway Concrete”

  1. Mingus says:

    I think that it is nice to see the users of the airport whom benefit financially to pay for this project instead of the usual taxpayer funds routinely demanded from developers and other business entities to pay for public improvements that they benefit from.

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