Environmental Assessment for Runway Safety Area Improvements Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport

The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (the Authority) is preparing an Environmental Assessment (EA) of potential environmental impacts associated with the proposed construction and operation of enhanced Runway Safety Areas (RSA) and related improvements at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. The RSA improvements include relocation of Runway end 4 by 420 feet to the south, relocation of the Runway 4 threshold by 240 feet to the south, shifting Runway 15-33 by 193 feet to the south, extension of the taxiway to the relocated Runway end 4 and construction of taxiway connectors to the runway ends, the rerouting and converting of existing service roads to patrol roads, and the installation of Engineered Materials Arresting Systems (EMAS) at the Runway 15, 22 and 33 ends. EMAS uses materials of closely controlled strength and density placed at the end of a runway to stop or greatly slow an aircraft that overruns the runway. The best material found to date is a lightweight, crushable concrete. When an aircraft rolls into an EMAS arrestor bed, the tires of the aircraft sink into the lightweight concrete and the aircraft is decelerated by having to roll through this material.

The EA is being prepared pursuant to the requirements and guidelines of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Order 1050.1E, Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures, FAA Order 5050.4B, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Implementing Instructions for Airport Actions and the FAA’s Environmental Desk Reference for Airport Actions.

The RSA enhancements are required to bring the RSAs for Runway 4-22 and Runway 15-33 into compliance with FAA Order 5200.8, Runway Safety Area Program, and related FAA orders. This program is intended to provide an enhanced measure of safety for aircraft taking off and landing on the runways.

The Authority invites the public to attend a workshop that will be held on Wednesday, February 17, 2010 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM at the Historic Main Terminal adjacent to Terminal A at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. Representatives from the Authority and its Consultant Team will be available to answer questions throughout the public workshop, and graphics will be on display illustrating the Airport, the FAA’s RSA program, the preliminary purpose and need for the proposed improvements, alternatives considered, the Authority’s preferred RSA alternative based on previous studies, the EA and scoping processes, and the schedules for the EA and implementation of the preferred alternative.

An opportunity to submit written comments will be provided during and after the public workshop. Written comments may be submitted to Charles Baummer, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, Planning Department, Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, One Aviation Circle, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Washington, DC 20001-6000, or by e-mail to Comments must be received by 5:00 PM Eastern Time, Wednesday, March 3, 2010.

Those interested in attending the public workshop who have special communication or accommodation needs are encouraged to contact Lisa Reznar of Ricondo & Associates, Inc. at (312) 606-0611, x105 at least 2 days prior to the workshop. Every reasonable effort to accommodate special needs will be made.

Click below to review graphics of the project site: