Dubai International Airport to upgrade main runway in 2014

Dubai International Airport in the UAE is set to commence a major runway enhancement project during an 80-day period from 1 May 2014.

One of the airport's two runways is close to the end of its design life and requires resurfacing and other modifications, while runway lighting requires upgrading.

New taxiways will also be constructed on the existing southern runway to increase capacity.

The overall project will involve the placement of 180,000t of asphalt on the northern runway, 65,000t of asphalt and 70,000m³ of concrete on the southern runway and taxiways, in addition to the installation of 3,000 runway lights.

During the execution of the project, the airport's scheduled flights will be reduced, and all freighter, charter and general aviation flights will be diverted to Dubai World Central (DWC), which is set to commence commercial operations on 27 October 2013.

The southern runway will remain closed during 1 May and 31 May 2013, while the northern runway will be decommissioned from 31 May to 20 July 2014.

Dubai Airports CEO Paul Griffiths said: "While we regret any inconvenience caused to our airline customers and our passengers, these upgrades are necessary to heighten safety, boost capacity and quite literally pave the way for future expansion."

The airport is also working with airlines to cut-down flight schedules during the project duration to safeguard service levels, as well as make complete use of available capacity at both airports.

Being constructed as part of a $33bn project, Dubai World Central Airport has commenced cargo operations in June 2010, with the launch of general aviation services on 28 April 2011.