Compiled by The Bedford Citizen
The Hanscom Field Advisory Commission (HFAC) heard the Annual State of Hanscom Report presented by Sharon Williams, Director of Massport’s LG Hanscom Field at their March 19, 2019 meeting.
Williams revealed an estimated timeline for a number of airfield ramp, taxi lane, taxiway, and runway repaving/construction projects that will impact some Bedford roadways and neighborhoods between 2020 and 2023. She stated that these projects are likely to be scheduled during summer and/or fall months and would probably take place during normal business hours for periods of 60 to 90 days at a time.
A projected timeline for Massport construction vehicle traffic Impacting Bedford:
- Summer 2020: Taxiway Romeo Repaving. Massport expects to use Hartwell Road as the haul route.
- Summer 2021/2022: Taxiway November Repaving. Massport expects to use Hartwell Road as the haul route.
- Summer 2023: Runway 5-23 Rehabilitation. Massport expects to use Hartwell Road as the haul route for repaving north section of the runway. Access for repaving south section of the runway will be through southern airport Gates 1 or 9, haul route via Routes 2A/128.
The Airport Director was also asked about a new taxilane Massport has planned for Bedford’s North Airfield which did not appear in the State of Hanscom Report (the taxilane will connect Taxiway Romeo to a proposed new T-hangar facility of up to 55,000 square feet off of Hartwell Road, adjacent to Instrumentation Laboratory: https://www.thebedfordcitizen.org/2019/02/massports-north-airfield-development-inches-forward/). She stated that the taxilane construction project will likely be scheduled for the Summer of 2020, in addition to the Taxiway Romeo repaving, and Massport also expects to use Hartwell Road as the haul route. Williams reminded HFAC meeting attendees that the estimated timeline for Massport construction projects, as well as the projects themselves, is always subject to change.
Asked about the possibility of closing Hanscom Field for several weeks in the summer so Massport construction vehicles could safely use airfield perimeter roads, entering and exiting the airfield through Civil Air Terminal Gate 1, for airfield repair and repaving projects without disrupting Bedford neighborhood streets, Williams replied that option is not under consideration. She explained that Massport uses Bedford as a haul route because “closure of the second busiest airport in New England would create massive headaches throughout the entire national airspace system as well as [abandoning] our primary role as a [corporate] reliever for Logan Airport.”
Chris Eliot, Lincoln HFAC member and chair of the meeting, pointed out that the limited number of access gates to the airfield resulted in the same communities being repeatedly and dramatically impacted by Massport construction projects on the airfield and suggested to Williams that “any creative solutions you can come up with to minimize that would be appreciated.”
Referring to lessons learned from the 2017 Hanscom Field Runway Repaving Project, Williams offered her reassurance that, “As we get closer to design for each one of these projects we’ll have robust discussions of all these things and welcome the input for certain.”
The complete Annual State of Hanscom Report can be viewed on the Massport website at https://www.massport.com/media/3115/state-of-hanscom-2018.pdf.
HFAC will next meet on Tuesday, April 16, at 7 pm in Room 308 of the Civil Air Terminal at 200 Hanscom Drive, Bedford. All residents of Hanscom area towns are welcome to attend, and parking is free. Time is set aside at each meeting for the public to ask questions and share concerns with HFAC members.