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Whenuapai airfield upgrade

4 February 2011

Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Auckland would like to advise the local community of a likely increase in the volume of heavy vehicles on local roads around RNZAF Base Auckland during the upgrade of Whenuapai airfield.

The contractor, Fulton Hogan Auckland Ltd, will make every effort to minimise any disruption to the local community and maintain a high level of safety.

Residents within the local community may also notice an increase in the level of air traffic overhead as aircraft temporarily fly alternative circuits. These alternative circuits will be required as the secondary runway and, later on, the main runway is closed to allow the works to be undertaken.

While the contractor and the RNZAF will be making every practical effort to minimise disruption it is inevitable that works of this nature will have some impact within the local area. The Air Force regrets any inconvenience this work may cause and appreciates the support and patience of the local community during this period.

The upgrade comes after a recent announcement by the Minister of Defence that the Government will spend $24 million as part of upgrading Whenuapai airfield at Royal New Zealand Air Force Base Auckland.

Work has begun this month and will extend over two earthworks construction seasons, with completion projected for May 2012.

The work includes an overlay and re-profiling of the main runway, upgrading of taxiways, improvements to storm water drainage and new airfield lighting. 

Existing materials will be incorporated within the works including re-cycling of redundant concrete taxiways and recycling of asphalt in the new construction.

The airfield is expected to remain operational with some limitations over the course of the works.

Whenuapai is home of No.5 Squadron’s P-3K Orion aircraft, No.6 Squadron’s Seasprite helicopters; as well as Boeing 757 and C-130 Hercules aircraft of No.40 Squadron.

It’s an exciting time for the NZ Defence Force and especially the Air Force at Whenuapai.  The contract is really about having the appropriate infrastructure in place to support our fleets of operational aircraft in the provision of vital Defence outputs.

ENDS

For more information please contact Squadron Leader Don Richardson; (09) 417 7440 or 0274 838 208

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