Vinton Construction

Appleton International Airport: ATW Runway & GA Taxiway Rehaboilitation

Wisconsin DOT Bureau of Aeronautics / Appleton

Date Completed:

September 2022


Concrete Pavement, Earthwork & Grading, Underground Utilities

Design Engineer:

Jason Marks, Westwood Professional Services

Project Summary:

The revitalization of Runway 12-30 encompassed a meticulously crafted pavement section with 13" of continuously reinforced PCC pavement, complemented by 4" of bituminous stabilized base course and 9" of crushed aggregate base course on a compacted subgrade. Similarly, Runway 3-21 saw its existing pavement elevated with a strategic configuration, featuring 13" of continuously reinforced PCC pavement, 6" of lean concrete stabilized base course, and 7" of crushed aggregate base course on a compacted subgrade.

The scale of achievement on this amitious endeavor includes the replacement of around 5,150 SY of full-depth concrete panels, as well as the execution of over 3,800 square feet of concrete pavement partial depth repairs, and an impressive 185,000 linear feet of concrete joint sealing filler replacements

Contract Amount:


Project Length:

9 Months

By the Numbers:

Runway 12-30 : 13" of continuously reimforced PCC Pavement

Runway 12-31 : Existing Pavement elevated with a strategic configuration: 13" of continuously reinforced PCC Pavement, 6" of lean concrete stabiled base course and 7" of crushed aggregate base course on a compacted subgrade.

Appx. 5,150 SY of full-depth panes

3,800 SF of concrete pavement partial depth repairs

185,000 linear feet of concrete joint sealing filler replacement

About the Project

One of the project's defining attributes lies in the adoption of innovative approaches, such as the utilization of a fast-track mix design for the PCC Pavement, facilitating an economical yet expeditious concrete solution, and a specialized high-early strength mix design for the midfield area.

To ensure minimal disruption to flight schedules, stringent time constraints were imposed for each runway phase. The remarkable completion of Runway 12-30 in just 20 calendar days and Runway 3-21 in a mere 13 calendar days exemplifies the extraordinary efficiency and dedication of the project team, comprising over 60 workers at times, with the added challenge of completing extensive midfield work during only eight (8) nights, between 8:00 PM and 6:00 AM.

Noteworthy Project Details

Beyond meeting all deadlines, the project's success owes much to a carefully choreographed coordination effort, involving airlines, airport tenants, and a proactive partnership with Wisconsin Department of Transportation Bureau of Aeronautics (WisDOT BOA), ensuring all FAA standards were met in the safety area.

Throughout the entire undertaking, Vinton's exceptional project managers demonstrated remarkable adaptability in coordinating subcontractors and addressing unforeseen challenges. Additionally, the team exhibited impeccable cooperation with airport maintenance and public safety personnel, leading to the effective removal of Foreign Object Debris (FOO) from the runways before reopening them to air traffic.

An exemplary display of communication and collaboration further defined this project, as Vinton, ATW Runway, airport stakeholders, ATC, airlines, and WisDOT BOA coordinated seamlessly, resulting in a flawless contract phasing with no complaints or contention.

In light of these outstanding achievements, the Appleton International Airport runway rehabilitation stands as a resounding testament to Vinton's expertise, commitment, and unparalleled ability to deliver on schedule and beyond expectations, making it a truly deserving recipient of recognition and acclaim.

The project's schedule presented several noteworthy challenges, primarily due to the need to keep one runway open during daylight hours and the complexities of accommodating the flight schedules of five airlines (FedEx, Allegiant Air, Delta, American, and United) that service the airport daily. To facilitate effective planning and coordination, flight schedules had to be finalized at least six months in advance to allocate sufficient time for the contractor to carry out repair work efficiently.
Among the most demanding aspects of the project were the overnight pavement repair operations, which involved replacing concrete pavement panels, conducting partial depth repairs, and sealing joints. Each night closure period spanned from 8:00 PM to 6:00 AM and was subject to weather assessments before scheduling work. Prior to allowing construction personnel into the area, a rigorous Airport Closure Checklist was executed by the resident engineer and Appleton Airport Public Safety to ensure all safety and operational protocols were adhered to. This checklist included confirming no inbound flights with the Air Traffic Control Tower and ensuring that none of the five airlines had scheduled flights for that night. Additionally, the checklist verified the deactivation of all runway and taxiway lights, navigational aids, and the airport beacon light. After these precautions were taken, traffic control measures were implemented, and the contractor commenced work for the night. Vinton Construction efficiently coordinated their efforts and those of their subcontractors to operate within the confined work area, taking into account clean-up requirements before reopening to air traffic. At the end of each work-night, the contractors devoted approximately three hours to sweeping and cleaning the work area thoroughly.
To expedite the night-work concrete repair areas, Vinton Construction utilized a high-early concrete pavement mix capable of achieving an opening strength of 2,000 psi within eight hours. This strength was sufficient as the pavement replacement panels were located on the runway edges, outside the typical aircraft main gear tracking path. For the partial depth repair areas, Vinton employed Rapid Set, a rapid setting concrete repair material by CTS Cement Manufacturing Corp., to achieve an opening strength of 5,000 psi, thus allowing prompt reopening to air traffic.
To incentivize adherence to the project schedule and completion of each of the eight separate phases within the allotted time, liquidated damages were specified in the contract. However, it is worth noting that no liquidated damages were imposed during the course of the project.
Specifically, for the overnight runway repairs, project-specific liquidated damages were in place. Failure to open the runway work area to air traffic by 6:00 AM incurred $2,500 per 15-minute interval between 6:00 AM and 7:00 AM. Subsequently, after 7:00 AM, liquidated damages escalated to $25,000 per 15-minute interval until 8:00 AM, and after 8:00 AM, a charge of $2,500 per 1-minute interval was applied until the airport was reopened.
These impressive efforts in managing the project schedule, navigating through challenging overnight work requirements, and ensuring timely delivery while avoiding liquidated damages, demonstrate the exceptional planning and execution by Vinton Construction and their dedicated team.