The runway repair project at Bagram Airfield, the busiest airfield in the Department of Defense for single runway operations, was completed and turned over to the Air Force Dec. 9, six weeks ahead of schedule.
The runway, which became operational Dec. 15, is currently functioning at 99 percent capacity.
The runway repair project was completed in two phases. First, an old, inoperable concrete Russian runway that runs parallel to the main runway was demolished and replaced with a nearly two-mile long temorary asphalt runway, which was completed Aug. 10.
Once the temporary runway was completed, the primary asphalt runway was resurfaced. The renovated runway not only allows fighter aircraft to carry more ammunition, but it also allows cargo aircraft to carry heavier loads.
The Air Force was able to transition to the temporary runway and then back to the main runway without any impacts to operations. The temporary runway will now be used as a taxiway.
Inability to deliver the runway on time was not an alternative knowing the high strategic importance of the runway itself, according to Robert Schaible, project management military construction branch chief.
The success of this project under the management of the Middle East District’s is due to the hard work of a large team of experts representing Air Force and Army military and civilian personnel, the contractor, the Air Force’s 455th Expeditionary Civil Engineering Squadron, Force Projection Flight, Security Forces, and Airfield Management.
The project was originally scheduled for completion Jan. 2014.