Runway reconstruction set to begin Saturday at SFO, travelers advised to expect delays

The busiest airport in the Bay Area is set to begin a runway maintenance project that will run for much of September.

Starting on Saturday, September 7 and spanning 20 days, the project involves reconstructing a 1,900-foot section of Runway 28L. Lighting and drainage infrastructure are also set to be replaced, and an additional 600-foot section of Runway 1L will be paved.

Once the runway closes at 12:01 am on Saturday, September 7, 2019, crews will begin the process of removing the existing runway layers to create a new base layer below the surface. 

The airport expects an increase in traffic volume at the intersection of Millbrae Ave and Old Bayshore Highway as construction trucks traverse this area to access the runway site. Up to 600 truck deliveries are expected in a 24-hour period at the peak of the project.

Drivers traveling through the area are advised to plan accordingly, by allowing extra time to travel in this area or take alternate routes.

Temporary change to nighttime noise abatement procedures SFO's Nighttime Preferential Runway Use program aims to maximize flights over water and minimize flights over land and populated areas during nighttime hours.

The program is expected to affect approximately 26 flights per day during the Runway closure.

Because the closure will reduce the Airport's overall runway capacity, SFO advises travelers to expect delays during this period.%INLINE%

Airlines have collaborated with SFO to voluntarily reduce their flight schedules to lessen the length of delays.

When combined with reductions from other non-airline flight operations, total flights at SFO have been reduced by 13% during the 20-day period of the runway 28L closure.

Flight delays are expected to average 30-45 minutes, with some flights may experience maximum delays of approximately 2 hours.

Both domestic and international flights may be affected by this activity, with short-haul flights being most affected.

SFO repaved the entire top layer of Runway 28L in spring 2017. During this project, core sampling and ground-penetrating radar indicated that the base layer was showing signs of fatigue cracking due to the large amount of aircraft activity in this area.

The runway is expected to reopen on Friday, September 27, 2019.