The Pullman – Moscow Regional Airport (PUW) has needed to realign the runway since 1999. However, the community struggled to find direction, support, and justification to move forward. Fast-forward to 2005, Mead & Hunt began work on Phase I of the Airport Master Plan. In 2007, we began Phase II of the Airport Master Plan. The goals were to evaluate alternatives, justify the need, and rally support from both the community and the FAA.
Since the start of Phase II, we have gone on to support the community’s goals by leading the environmental assessment, stakeholder outreach and alignment, financial planning and management, multi-phased design, and construction administration. A project that started with an aerial photograph, a few markers, and a scale quickly turned into a very large, complex airfield project.
On October 10, 2019 the airport’s ambitious vision was realized with the commissioning of a new 7,100-foot runway. The $154 million program allows commercial air service to continue to operate and grow, providing an airfield compliant with FAA design standards. The program also provides adequate runway length for corporate users to reach their global customers and university charter aircraft to use their hometown airport.
The realignment of the runway significantly improves all-weather reliability, reducing delays and cancellations and enhancing the quality of life for residents and thousands of students, faculty, and visitors of Washington State University and the University of Idaho. For those who have not had the opportunity to visit the Palouse, there are no highways, no waterways, no rail access—PUW is the gateway to the world and the completion of the runway realignment program was vital to maintaining this connection.
Congratulations to the Pullman-Moscow Regional Airport Executive Director Tony Bean, A.A.E, the Airport Board chaired by Mayor Glenn Johnson, City of Pullman, vice-chair Mayor Bill Lambert, City of Moscow and the countless stakeholders who contributed to the success of the runway realignment program. This program could not have been accomplished without their leadership and commitment.
Thank you to Karen Miles, FAA Seattle Airports District Office Program Manager and the FAA team nationwide who provided the guidance and support to solve countless challenges. Together, the Airport, FAA, and Mead & Hunt created a collaborative partnership to solve complex challenges in support of this community vision two decades in the making.
Our mission is not complete. Two years remain to complete construction of the parallel taxiway. We are also preparing to begin the next step in a transformative airport modernization program: a new passenger terminal set to begin design in 2020. Up next after the terminal is a master plan. I guess it’s almost time for a new aerial and box of markers!
Thank you to PUW for trusting Mead & Hunt to be your partner in this endeavor—we are proud to be part of your team! We look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in the future.