Please see the message below from Columbia Interim City Manager John Glascock regarding Columbia Regional Airport --
The sudden cancellation of flights by regional carriers at COU has caused many people to delay travel plans, work to rebook flights from other airports, and caused frustration and perhaps anger. For that, we apologize and we are sorry. We value and appreciate our customers, surrounding communities and partners for supporting Columbia Regional Airport and we will strive to resolve this issue as quickly as possible.
Airport Manager Mike Parks, Economic Development Director Stacey Button who has oversight at COU, our consulting engineering firm Burns & McDonnell, as well as many others, have all been working around the clock this weekend to fully understand the airlines’ concerns and what actions can possibly be taken for our airline partners to resume service at COU as soon as possible.
As part of our ongoing discussions with the airlines, they have indicated that they are concerned about the “crown” on runway 2-20 where it intersects runway 13-31. The crown is required by the FAA in all main runways to assist with water draining off of the runway, much like a road is crowned to assist in draining water. This crown can cause the feeling of hitting a bump during takeoff/landing.
Columbia Regional Airport embarked on a bold Master Plan in 2009 to address a number of infrastructure projects to ensure COU had adequate infrastructure to handle the needs of a modern commercial fleet. A part of that plan was to replace the original crosswind runway to accommodate commercial air traffic when the main runway (2-20), which is 50 years old, would need maintenance. In 2017 the secondary runway (13-31) was completely rebuilt in anticipation of the main runway maintenance project in 2019.
While planning for the main runway maintenance project, we consulted many times with our partners, including the airlines, to inquire about any concerns. At the time, none mentioned the crown in the main runway as being an issue. The crosswind runway has been used numerous times by the airlines since its completion and no concerns were voiced to us by the airlines.
I have personally inspected the runway and discussed potential resolutions with engineers from Burns & McDonnell and provided my professional suggestions as a civil engineer to remove or reduce this crown during the time runway 13-31 is operating as COU’s primary runway. We will discuss those options with the airlines and the FAA on Monday morning.
Airlines determine their flight schedules and statuses and you should continue to contact your airline to check the status of your flight. United Airlines can be reached by calling 800-864-8331 and American Airlines can be reached by calling 800-433-7300.
Additional information will be shared as soon as it’s available.
crj900lr wrote:Is that restaurant still there upstairs? I remember it being there when US Airways Express had B-1900 service to MCI and STL out of there. Food was pretty decent.
1836Sam wrote:What an absolute embarrassment to COU and Burns & McDonnell.
RJNUT wrote:1836Sam wrote:What an absolute embarrassment to COU and Burns & McDonnell.
How is this an embarrassment to either?. The carriers have been using this field for sometime now and suddenly the crown is an issue? The point of intersect between the runways would not be involved in any aspect of the landing or takeoff. other than taxi
1836Sam wrote:What an absolute embarrassment to COU and Burns & McDonnell.
TNST3B wrote:1836Sam wrote:What an absolute embarrassment to COU and Burns & McDonnell.
Burns and McDonnell is one of the most respected engineering firms in the region, they get the best of the best engineers. If the city (the city manager is a professional engineer) and Burns and McDonnell say it's fine I venture to believe them.
I find it very interesting that Air Wisconsin continues to fly to the airport.
City of Columbia Interim City Manager John Glascock addressed the public and members of the media at a press conference this afternoon regarding the sudden cancelation of flights by regional carriers at Columbia Regional Airport over the weekend. Below is the message he delivered at the press conference.
"First and foremost, I want to thank our customers for their patronage and I want to sincerely apologize for the frustration and confusion this situation has caused. I am sorry. We will work quickly to mitigate the concerns expressed by our airline partners and their pilots. Safety is our top priority at Columbia Regional Airport and we have been and are listening, assessing, planning and fixing to address the expressed concerns.
This morning we met with representatives from United Airlines and American Airlines, as well as their regional carriers Air Wisconsin, SkyWest, Mesa Airlines and Envoy Air, along with officials from the FAA, our consulting engineering firm Burns & McDonnell and Emery Sapp & Sons (ESS) contractors. During these meetings, we were able to get a clear understanding of the concerns the pilots have regarding the runway 13-31 and 2-20 intersection. Their comments were consistent with the feedback we received over the weekend when the concerns were first brought to our attention. They have indicated that they are concerned about the "crown" on runway 2-20 where it intersects runway 13-31. The crown is required by the FAA in all main runways to assist with water draining off of the runway, much like a road is crowned to assist in draining water. This crown can cause the feeling of hitting a bump during takeoff and landing.
Even though runway 13-31 is fully FAA compliant, we want to address the pilots’ safety concerns and ensure our customers have a good experience while traveling in and out of COU. We have listened to the feedback from the airlines and our customers, and we’re taking action. We are diligently working with Burns & McDonnell and the FAA to evaluate and modify the elevation of the crown. We will make minor modifications to the crown that will allow for a smoother takeoff and landing while maintaining compliance with the FAA.
Our plan is to close runway 13-31 on Tuesday, April 9 to begin modifications. During this time, the airport will be closed to all commercial and general aviation traffic. These drastic steps are required so that we can open COU back to all air traffic as quickly as possible and cause the least amount of disruption to our customers. We currently expect to reopen COU on Tuesday, April 16 to all traffic. Some airlines may resume service on April 16 or wait until April 17. This schedule is dependent on weather and other factors which may arise. Our partner airlines will update their reservation systems based on the updates we provide to them during the project.
We will be sharing daily updates with our customers and our airline partners. During this process, we want to be transparent with you and make sure you are informed. As with any travel to and from COU, passengers should contact their airline directly to rebook or reschedule flights. United Airlines can be reached by calling 800-864-8331 and American Airlines can be reached by calling 800-433-7300.
Again, I sincerely apologize to our customers who have been and will be impacted by this closure. We will work as quickly and efficiently as possible with our partners to make the modifications and begin air service again soon."
usxguy wrote:How have the temps been in COU lately? I just drove roundtrip between the Yukon & Alaska - a few days after our temps were well above 50* consistently, it was saggy as hell... almost like a rollercoaster, from the frost heaves /permafrost thaw -- and on the return 2 weeks later, the roads were in much better shape. Surfaces will tend to move around a bit between seasons, so I'm wondering if that has anything to do with the more noticeable bump in the crown.
Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe
Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days
Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit
Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior
Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft
Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials
Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions
Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin
Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon
Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos
Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft
Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries
Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground
Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos