Runway project to go before CPA

| 05/11/2019 | 28 Comments
Cayman News Service
Owen Roberts International Airport

(CNS): The Central Planning Authority will be considering the Cayman Islands Airport Authority’s application for an extension to the runway and other exterior upgrades when it meets tomorrow. The application includes lengthening and strengthening the runway in a westerly direction, filling the airfield ponds, expanding the apron to the east and a perimeter access road. But according to the agenda, it may not be clear skies ahead for the application.

Representatives from the airport are expected to appear before the CPA at 1pm, when issues raised by an objector, who has claimed the airport is already undermining his building and the health and well-being of his workers, will be addressed, as well as the CIAA’s plans to manage the construction and the removal of wildlife from the ponds.

The Department of Environment has said it has no objections to the work but has advised the airport authority to “manage and mitigate the risks” to the creatures that live in the ponds by filling them slowly, to allow the species to move to one side of the pond, where they can be trapped and relocated to the MRCU pond. The airport has already agreed that is a suitable way to ensure the safety of the turtles, fish and birds that currently call the ponds home.

But a tenant of the nearby Cayman Business Park, whose building is in the flight path, has filed an objection because he believes the extension will make an already bad situation worse. Having engaged an engineer to investigate the health issues caused by noise, the objector said his employees should already be wearing ear protection. With the proposed work, the building will need to be soundproofed to reach a safe level, according to the objector, who asked the CPA to examine health issues resulting from this extension for other occupants of other buildings in the area.

The planning department has said that a perimeter jet-blast deflector wall needs to be erected at the runway taxi turnaround facing Crewe Road. The deflector barrier will be about 10-feet and will extend from Mango Tree Restaurant to the new runway. Planning said the CPA will also need to determine if any additional screening should be provided.

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Category: Business, development, Local News, Transport

Comments (28)

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  1. peter r says:

    When the Airport Authority wanted to build a jet blast deflector last year, they worded the tender so it was only directed to one company. The request for a quotation was worded in such a way that only thier product qualified. When we pointed out we had a competing but equally effective product, they chose to ignore us. I can only guess how our competitor gained such favourable treatment.

  2. Anonymous says:

    All of these proposed expansion and “upgrading” works at the airport and they’ve not included an isolated aircraft parking position, an International Civil Aviation Organization requirement.

    This would be the time to include this crucial requirement, why isn’t it and why hasn’t the CAA demanded CIAA’s compliance to this?

  3. Mervyn Cumber says:

    One of the early “Pioneers” in Cayman aviation, Tom Hubbell, sadly died in a small aircraft accident immediately next to the larger pond at the approach to the airfield, I was the second person at the scene, my office being in the Kirk Motor building way back then. Perhaps, a small memorial can be placed at the side of the field in memory of this fine gentleman and his student.

  4. Mervyn Cumber says:

    Many years ago when diving off West Bay, I recall near present day Royal Palms seeing a mixture of fresh water with seawater, it looks a bit like a mirage or heatwave. The Royal Palms and the old Islander Hotel had large ponds on their properties. The pond at the Islander site used to be the public dump, and it eventually got filled. The Royal Palms site was filled with cars and just about anything else! My point is that the ponds at the airfield may well be connected like these two mentioned sites via tunnels to the ocean and may well take a great deal of fill, perhaps, it will show of South West Point somewhere. Just a thought.
    The construction of the “new runway” on Little Cayman was halted when they found a huge underground cave half way down the proposed runway.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Where are the environmentalist on this one or is it just the port that effects the environment.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, sorry….I just dont remember seeing any shipwrecks, coral or fish in this area…

    • Stupid is clearly contagious... and spreading fast! says:

      Because puddles that contain pond scum and reeds are equivalent to vast irreplaceable thousand year old coral structures that are the backbone to our coastal marine environments

      I guess why put any effort into being logical when it is this easy to be stupid, right?

  6. Anonymous says:

    Pond referendum!

  7. Frequent Flier says:

    Which came first, Cayman Business Park or the airport? Why was planning permission ever given for buildings directly on the flight path?

    I live off Crewe Road; the airport was already there when I bought the house so I don’t expect to try and change it or demand noise reduction. To the occupants of Cayman Business Park, if you see a problem then relocate to somewhere else!

    I would like to know what has happened to the plan for a taxi-way which involved Fosters moving to a site off Linford Pearson Highway and the closure of Dorcy Drive.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Will the same company that supplied the CCTV supply these as well.?

  9. Anonymous says:

    It’s not clear in the story but am I correct in understanding that there will be no additional taxiways? If so they’re not tackling the major problem at ORIA, which is the need for departing aircraft to backtrack to turn round for take off and arriving aircraft to continue to the pan to turn round and taxi back to the terminal.

    Many years ago I flew out of a regional airport in the UK that was effectively a slightly smaller layout of ORIA and doing that on ever flight was a royal pain in the butt.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Oh yeah, because the CPA are impartial to Unity Cabinet directives…smh.

  11. Anonymous says:

    The runway must be extended in order to accommodate bigger jets. We need to get with the times!

    • Anonymous says:

      its nothing to do with the bigger jets. more about general efficency of existing type plans and higher volume of flights

      • Anonymous says:

        3:31 And safety. Trust me, landing an airliner on that runway has a pretty high pucker factor if the weather’s not ideal. BA pilots refer to it as a ‘carrier landing’.

  12. Anonymous says:


  13. Anonymous says:

    Hell to the damn NO! No port, no extended runway, nobody gets a pass till we dissolve these leaders.

  14. Anonymous says:

    You call that an objection?

  15. Anonymous says:

    Now let the protests begin!

  16. Anonymous says:

    “..employees should already be wearing ear protection..”. Employees should be running as fast as they could. In fact, should have done it already. Your health is the only asset that you have. Once it is gone, the rest of your life and savings would be spent on doctors and pills without any guarantee.

  17. Anonymous says:

    so has the original airport expansion been completed?
    what was the final account?

  18. Anonymous says:

    save the pond!


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