3. There Are Plans to Extend LaGuardia’s Runways
A Draft Environmental Assessment for LaGuardia Airport renovations was completed in August 2013 for public review and the public comment period ended a month later While the reason behind the extension is pretty standard airport safety stuff, it was the map that surprised us. One of the extended runways will basically touch Rikers Island, if the map in the report is accurate (hopefully not since it houses one of the world’s largest jails).
Back to the proposal, the 180 feet extension on two runways responds to a Congressional mandate to increase the size of runway safety areas for emergency purposes. The runways in question are currently built over the water and are shorter than the new standard.
The new runway safety areas will be built from “Engineered Material Arresting Systems” (EMAS), “customized cellular cement material, designed to crush under the weight of an aircraft and provide deceleration” because there isn’t enough space to create a “full dimension” runway safety area at LaGuardia.