Philadelphia International Airport (PHL) has received $2 million in funding from the state of Pennsylvania for a project to construct an aircraft parking apron capable of accommodating up to eight planes.
“The addition of this aircraft parking apron provides more space for aircraft to park at PHL in lieu of the parking positions at the terminals,” said Airport Chief Operating Officer Keith Brune. “This allows for more efficient use of the terminal gates, which in turn help airline operations run smoother.”
In addition, the proposed apron is the first of several enabling projects that will allow for expansion of cargo operations at PHL as part of the proposed West Cargo Development.
The funding comes from the Redevelopment Assistance Capital Program (RACP), a state grant program administered by the Office of the Budget for the acquisition and construction of regional economic, cultural, civic, recreational, and historical improvement projects.
“Grant funding is always vital to enabling us to proceed with projects to keep PHL operating efficiently, but in these challenging times, they are even more important,” Brune said. “We are grateful to our Pennsylvania state elected officials for their efforts in helping us to secure this funding.”
The proposed apron will be located on the northwest corner of the existing airfield next to the FedEx facilities in Cargo City and on the former site of the USPS facility that was demolished in 2018. The project also includes the relocation of the fence around the airfield, stormwater management basins, and high-mast lighting. A portion of the constructed pavement will also be used as parking for deicing trucks.
The apron will be lighted by six high-mast light poles, and electrical infrastructure will be installed to accommodate aircraft. Security cameras will also be installed at various locations around the apron as well as storm pipes, basins, and oil-water separators for stormwater management.
The $31.9 million project is expected to be complete in June 2022.
The project also calls for ultra-lightweight foam glass aggregate in the construction of the embankment for the apron. The use of this material is intended to mitigate the expected consolidation of the underlying soils at the site, typically experienced from the additional weight of the pavement structure and fill material used to construct the apron. The use of this material at PHL is a first and was chosen to minimize the construction time for the project. Typical construction methods used to address consolidation of soils would add a minimum of 6 months to the construction schedule.