As December 2012 approached, there was much hype about the Mayan Calendar and predictions of a polar shift. In reality that did not happen, but there has been a shift in the magnetic true North. Don’t be afraid. It happened well over 15 years ago and the Carbon County Airport is finally getting around to renaming the runways while it is renovating them.
Nielson Construction has the main runway at the Carbon County Buck Davis Field completely torn up and is regrading the bed, improving the drainage, and resurfacing the entire distance. It will remain closed while the cross-wind runway 14/32 is open and handling air traffic.
Assistant Airport Manager Jennifer Jensen said that they are expecting to have a portion of the main runway back in service by July. It will be 5,700 feet of the 8,300 total distance, but enough to land most aircraft. Once reopened, 14/32 will be shut down and the renovations will shift to that runway and the remaining portion of 36/18.
When reopened, 36/18 will be renamed 1/19. The cross-wind runway will go from 14/32 to 15/38. This reflects the shift of magnetic north and Jensen admits they should have done this 15 years ago and it will be required in 2015.
After the last Carbon County Commission meeting, the final runway, 7/25, will also face renovations. It is been closed due to being in poor condition for years and will be a welcome addition to the Buck Davis Field. The runway will be renamed 8/26 when it is finished.
Nielson Construction will be the contractor on the final phase of renovations as well.
Jensen said that Nielson has been a great contractor and very good about safety and keeping traffic off of the working runway and taxi way.
“We have had close calls with planes needing to swerve to avoid construction vehicles in the past with other contractors,” she said.