Approximately every five years WSDOT Aviation conducts a system-wide study of pavement to assess the relative condition of pavements for selected Washington airports. The program serves as a tool to identify system pavement needs, shape programming decisions for federal and state grant aid, provide information for legislative decision making, and assist airport sponsors in making informed planning decisions. The program also develops accurate pavement inventories and identifies necessary maintenance, repair, rehabilitation and reconstruction projects.
WSDOT Aviation has contracted with Applied Pavement Technology, Inc., assisted by CH2M Hill and CivilTech, to complete the pavement study.
How is pavement condition measured?
The Pavement Condition Index (PCI) procedure is the standard used by the aviation industry to visually assess pavement condition. The PCI provides a consistent, objective, and repeatable tool to represent the overall pavement condition. The methodology involves walking over the pavement, identifying the type and severity of distress present, and measuring the quantity of distress. The information is then used to develop a composite index (PCI number) that represents the overall condition of the pavement in numerical terms, ranging from 100 (excellent) to 0 (failed). The PCI number is a measure of overall condition and is indicative of the level of work that will be required to maintain or repair a pavement. Further, the distress information provides insight into what is causing the pavement to deteriorate, which is the first step in selecting the appropriate repair.
The Washington Aviation System Plan completed in 2009 set PCI performance objectives of 75 for runways and 70 for taxiways and aprons.
Why study airport pavements?
There are many reasons why it’s important to evaluate pavements at Washington airports:
- Pavement condition is a critical measure of airport performance, and is important both from a cost effectiveness and aviation safety standpoint.
- Maintenance and preservation of runway, taxiway and apron pavements represents one of the largest capital investments in the aviation system.
- Ongoing pavement maintenance is critical because repairs are much more costly once the condition deteriorates below a certain level. Pavement condition plays a critical role in aviation safety. Aircraft perform takeoffs and landings under extremely high speeds, and are therefore vulnerable to cracks, loose debris, and other pavement weaknesses that result from inadequate maintenance.
The pavement study enables WSDOT to make proactive, cost-effective and strategic investments into the pavements at Washington’s airports. It also allows WSDOT to effectively communicate to legislators, decision makers and airports the pavement needs at Washington airports.
Which airports are included in the study?
List of airports included in the pavement study pdf 30kb
How is the study funded?
The pavement study is funded primarily through a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grant.
What will the study produce?
- Statewide Pavement Management Program Report: including a project overview and results of the statewide analysis.
- Executive Summary: a concise, easy to read summary of the project and its results.
- Interactive Data Exchange Application (IDEA): an online pavement reporting tool. It will present statewide summary statistics and individual airport results. The program will also update performance objective data in the Washington state Airport Information System (AIS).
- AIS pavement work tracking module: online tool will allow individual airport users to identify and enter any pavement construction, rehabilitation, or maintenance work completed on their airport in a consistent and uniform manner.
What is the project schedule?
Project kick-off: June 2012
Pavement inspections: July - November 2012
Data analysis: October 2012 - May 2013
Develop interactive airport pavement website - June 2013
Develop final pavement report - June 2013
Who can you contact for help?