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JBLE upgrades flightline

By Staff Sgt. Carlin Leslie 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs

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The Brownie Pad on the Langley Air Force Base flightline, is receiving a 48,000-square-yard upgrade, as part of an $11 million, three-phase project.

The three phases consists of repairs to Flight Line road, the T-38 Talon ramp and the refurbishment of Brownie Pad, which will adopt the moniker East Ramp, upon completion of the 10-month construction in October 2018.

“Once the East Ramp is complete and open, it will increase aircraft capacity by 35 percent,” said U.S. Air Force Tech. Sgt. Aaron Woods, 1st Operations Support Squadron NCO in charge of airfield management operations. “That 35 percent will give airfield operations a higher flexibility for exercises like the trilateral multinational exercise and open more parking spaces for other operations to use.”

According to Woods, Airmen would complete four to five Foreign Object Debris checks a day because pieces of the old concrete would blow onto the taxi ways where aircraft can be damaged.

To help battle future FOD issues and save airfield management time with less inspections, plans were made to ensure the sturdiness and longevity of the new ramp.

According to Kevin Armstrong, 633rd Civil Engineer Squadron construction inspector, the new ramp will have a 12-inch base of cement-stabilized soil, which is better for the environment; 12-inches of crushed concrete recycled from the old pad; and a top layer of 13-inch-thick concrete slab.

Even though the concrete slab was the biggest part of the project, additional upgrades were also made to the ramp.

“About 2,500 linear feet of storm water pipes were installed to replace the 100-year-old piping; drainage was added to allow proper water mitigation; 92 grounded tie-downs were added for aircraft safety; and 8,000 feet of striping were made to mark all the new aircraft parking spots,” Armstrong said.   

Once completed, the newly developed infrastructure will help JBLE improve mission capabilities on the flightline.

“This project fixes safety hazards for the flightline, allowing airfield management and maintenance to better support and provide a safe environment for our pilots and aircraft,” Woods said. “This project will also de-conflict the flightline traffic, allowing for better mobility and space for national security operations.”
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