Thursday 19 April 2012
Traffic signals will be installed at Bulwer Avenue and at the airport shortly for vehicles to begin delivering materials for the essential maintenance and improvements at the airfield.
Up to 350,000 tonnes of aggregate are required for the works, which include the resurfacing of the runway and taxiways and reconstruction of all the concrete aprons, where aircraft park.
The majority of this material is being imported by ship to Longue Hougue, where it is stockpiled. It will be delivered to the airport using a fleet of tipper trucks and tractor and trailer units. This 'mass haul' operation is expected to start next week (week commencing 23 April 2012).
All the vehicles in the mass haul fleet comply with local size, weight and speed restrictions, and will be fitted with a real time tracking system. They can therefore be monitored along the route and the precise speed and location recorded at all times.
The tractor and trailer units have an extra axle, which enables them to carry heavier loads than the conventional lorries. This will mean around 3,000 fewer vehicle movements over the course of the project than just using trucks. The tractors also have more potential uses, which has reduced the overall number of vehicles required for the works.
Fully laden, each vehicle will weigh up to 28 tonnes. A weighbridge has been installed at the temporary storage compound at Longue Hougue to ensure they are not overloaded.
The number of vehicle movements will depend on the amount of concrete and bitumen required each day as the work progresses through various phases. There will be relatively few at the start of the mass haul operation, and over the next 12 months it is estimated there will be on average 50-60 round trips a day. The frequency will be around double that during the peak activity.
The vehicles will head south from Longue Hougue to the Halfway, before turning inland along Vale Road and Route Militaire and rejoining the coastal route at Vale Church. They will turn left at L'Eree for the final leg of the outbound route, past La Houguette, Forest and Le Rondin Schools to the main compound opposite the airport entrance.
Mass haul operations on this final leg will cease during school terms at drop off and pick up times. A section of the car parks at L'Eree and Grandes Rocques have been assigned as lay-by areas, where any vehicles already on the route can stop while this embargo is in place.
Temporary signs have been installed, which will shortly be replaced with signs indicating the times the areas are required.
Once unloaded, vehicles will continue on an anti-clockwise route, returning to Longue Hougue via St Martin's and Val des Terres.
It is expected the mass haul activity will primarily operate Monday to Saturday, starting early in the morning and finishing in the evening.
The temporary signals installed this week will be replaced by standard traffic lights in the coming weeks. It is intended these will be removed at the completion of the project.