Dublin Airport has begun work on its new runway after 2016 turned into a record year for passengers handled – for the second year in a row.
Almost 28 million passengers passed through Dublin Airport last year, and movements were up as new routes and airlines started operations.
Planning permission for the new runway was originally granted in 2007, but was delayed due to the slump in the economy. Now, with the ten-year deadline approaching, Dublin Airport Authority has applied for a five-year extension to allow it to complete the work.
The first phase of construction began in mid-December, with hedges and structures being cleared. The new runway will be parallel to the existing runway 10/28, but to the north of the airport site, allowing simultaneous movements on both runways; it will help ease congestion during the busiest hours of operation, typically from 5-8am.
The existing cross runway, 16/34, will be retained. However, it is only used in extreme weather conditions.
For spotters this will mean not all movements can be seen from the famous mound alongside the existing runway 10/28.
The original plans for the North Runway Project called for a viewing area to be incorporated. This will presumably be around Naul Road or Forest Little Road, which will both be realigned to skirt around the new runway, and hopefully include something similar to the mound on the south runway.
Work is expected to be completed by 2020.