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Planes on the plain: runway due to appear in 2014

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Open day at airport site, 2013. Picture courtesy of St Helena airport project
Open day at airport site, 2013. Picture courtesy of St Helena airport project

St Helena’s first airport is set to take shape on Prosperous Bay Plain in 2014, with the completion of major parts of the project.

Tasks set to be completed are:

  • The filling-in of Dry Gut, the deep valley that must be crossed by the runway.
  • Runway excavations
  • Construction of the main terminal buildings
  • Paving of the apron and runway

The newly-approved wharf in Rupert’s Bay is also set to be completed before the end of the year brings heavy seas.

Work started before Christmas 2013 on creating an access path to the new wharf area, and on establishing a precast yard in the upper valley. Equipment is due to be installed in January for casting concrete armour and other parts of the wharf.

On the airport site itself, the fill of Dry Gut was 55% complete by Christmas, with the ground level raised by 50 metres.

Roughly 4.3 million cubic metres of material were poured into the valley, weighing 7.2 millions tons – that’s 265,500 truckloads. In all, 266 million litres of water were used in the process.

Vehicles on site were driven 531,000 kilometres: no small achievement on a tiny island.

Click here to read issue 42 of the airport newsletter

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