More Work Needed On Airport Runway To Pass Inspection

OCEAN CITY – A failed inspection of a recent runway project at the Ocean City Municipal Airport is currently being addressed and the repaving is expected to be completed next month.

According to Ocean City Public Works Director Hal Adkins, the scope of the runway project was expansive, including milling the runway and underground excavation for electrical work to the installation of navigational aids, stormwater management and perimeter fencing.

Construction began in May. The contract included a 90-day work period having the project be wrapped up in late-July.

The town’s airport consultant of record is Delta Aviation, which designed the project and provided on-site inspections as required by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

“The final surface level of pavement on the runway has failed relative to inspection,” Adkins said on Monday. “Some of the grades were wrong and some of the compaction tests failed … the runway is not back open yet.”

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Adkins furthered that there is a documented paper trail that started in late July between Delta Aviation and the contractor that the contractor has until Aug. 24 to provide Ocean City engineers a schedule indicating how they are going to correct the problem and they have until Sept. 4 to mobilize and beginning addressing it.

“They are probably going to have to mill the surface off down about an inch and re-lay a new surface,” Adkins said. “It is unfortunate that the project didn’t wrap up late-July and everything was perfect, and it has been an inconvenience to the airport in the interim but I am hoping to have a resolution come from the contractor by the end of this week on what they are going to do to correct the problem.”

The correction will have no effect to the funding of the project. Any or all corrective measures are the responsibility of the contractor. There will be no additional expenditure funds on behalf of the town or FAA.

The airport has two runways and the runway under construction is the north-south runway, indicator number 02/20, also known as the cross-wind runway.

Adkins reported a review of the airport’s fuel sales from May through July has shown that the reconstruction has not negatively impacted the airport’s revenue stream.

“I want everyone to realize that the issue is the fact that the final surface is not compliant, the rest of the project went fine,” he said.

Adkins estimated if all goes as planned work will be completed by Sept. 15.