HCMC – The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam has approved a plan to shut the runways and taxiways at HCMC’s Tan Son Nhat airport and Hanoi’s Noi Bai airport for repair and upgrade starting from July 1, as part of a major project to rehabilitate and upgrade the runways and taxiways of the two international airports, with the Transport Ministry being the investor.
At Tan Son Nhat airport, runway 25R/07L and taxiways E1, NS1, W4 and W6 will be closed from July 1 until the end of the year for maintenance. During this period, aircraft will take off and land on runway 25L/07R.
Besides this, rapid-exit and parallel taxiways will be built, while indication lights and other flight management facilities will be upgraded. It will require VND2.02 trillion in investment, backed by the State budget.
The HCMC-based airport was asked to team up with the relevant agencies to ensure safety and security and maintain operations at the airport during the execution of the project.
Regarding Noi Bai airport, runways 11L/29R and 11R/29L will be shut one at a time for upgrade until the end of the year to avoid affecting operations at the airport.
Further, three new rapid-exit taxiways will be built, while the existing taxiways will undergo upgrades. Indication lights, a drainage system and flight management facilities will be developed at Noi Bai. The total funding for the work will be from the State budget at VND2.03 trillion.
To Tu Ha, deputy director of Noi Bai airport, said the flight frequency would drop as planes will take off and land on the same runway during the upgrade.
Many flights scheduled for peak hours would be shifted to less busy hours, with the total number of daily flights at the Hanoi-based airport remaining unchanged.
Ha advised passengers to stay updated on the latest information regarding their flight status and come to the airport at least two hours ahead of departure.
The Transport Ministry said that starting work on the two projects in early July is essential since the flight frequency at the two airports is low as there are almost no international flights due to Covid-19. When the pandemic is over, the demand for international travels will surge, making the closure of the runways more difficult.
Since 2017, the two airports have been suffering from overloading and receiving many more modern aircraft with a huge capacity. As a result, their runways and taxiways have deteriorated.