Airport Safety Improvement Program

Airport Improvement

A Safety Improvement Program at the Lake in the Hills Airport is underway.  This program is funded through a Federal and State grant as well as revenues generated at the airport.  Federal and State funds provide 95% funding for project costs.  The program includes several projects aimed at making airport facilities current to FAA standards.  The end result is to enhance safety and increase efficiency of airport operations.

Why is This Program Important?

Originally a privately owned airport, Lake in the Hills 3CK Airport was not required to be constructed to meet FAA standards.  In 1984, the Village of Lake in the Hills acquired the airport and it became a public airport, open for general aviation use.  In addition, being a reliever to O’Hare, the FAA has mandated that the airport must be brought into compliance with current FAA safety standards, which requires funding and time.  As such, the FAA has granted a temporary waiver to the current safety standards, allowing for the airport to continue to operate despite not meeting current FAA standards.  But as noted, this is a temporary condition and the airport must be brought into compliance.  The Airport Safety Improvement Program is aimed at bringing the airport into compliance with current FAA Safety Standards.

Airport Safety Improvement Projects

The following summarizes significant projects that make up the Safety Improvement Program.  These are categorized as completed, underway or future projects scheduled through 2014.  Scheduling and staging of future projects are subject to change depending on FAA and State funding availability and appropriation.

Pyott Road Relocation - Completed
Pyott Road was shifted to the east moving it further away from the existing runway.  This shift increases separation between aircraft traffic and motor vehicular traffic which enhances the overall safety in this area.  Land acquisition for this project was completed in phases which occurred in 2005 and 2007.  The construction started in 2008 and was completed in 2010.

New Parallel Taxiway Phase 1 (Taxiway A) - Completed
Construction of a new parallel taxiway is a component of the safety improvement plan.  The new taxiway is shifted away from the existing runway.  This shift increases separation between the runway and new taxiway.  The separation meets FAA safety criteria and enhances safety at the airport.  Construction of the new taxiway was completed in September 2012.

Wildlife Hazard Assessment - Completed
Certain wildlife species can create safety issues at airports.  The species that immediately come to mind are birds.  As we all know birds can collide with moving aircraft.  These collisions can result in aircraft malfunction which is a serious safety concern.  Other species may present hazards as well.  Deer on an active runway may lead to aircraft impacts or erratic deviation off of a runway.  To evaluation wildlife hazards at the airport the USDA is developing a Wildlife Hazard Assessment Report. This assessment is a process that includes surveys of existing wildlife at and in the vicinity of the airport.  The assessment will help identify potential hazards caused by wildlife.  Using the assessment the most effective method to mitigate the hazards could be considered.  A final report from the USDA was completed in July of 2012.

Extended Perimeter Fencing - Future
Fencing at airport facilities provides security by keeping unauthorized persons from entering into sensitive areas.  In addition fencing helps to mitigate wildlife encroachments by keeping animals such as deer and coyotes from entering airport runway areas.  The airport currently has fencing that covers approximately 75% of the perimeter boundaries.  A project to extend the perimeter fencing is designed.  This project will extend the perimeter fencing at the airport which will cover 100% of the perimeter boundary.  An electric gate and several personnel gates are included to allow access for emergencies and routine maintenance.  The proposed fence is a chain link type, 8 feet in height with 2 feet buried in the ground.  Part of the fence is buried to keep smaller mammals out.  These mammals could be a food source for larger animals like coyotes. 

Replacement Fuel Facility - Underway
A project to relocate the existing fuel facility is included in the 2013 program.  This project will relocate the fuel facility outside of the runway object free zone.  A temporary location is planned for the fuel location in 2014.  Afterward the final location will be implemented with construction of the new apron.

Access Road to New Terminal Area (Phase I) - Future
The Access Road will provide vehicular access to the new apron/ramp area and eventually to new hangar facilities as the hangar buildings develop.

Acquire Four Hangers for Taxiway Relocation
The purchase or relocation of four hangars is a precursor to the relocation of the east portion of the parallel taxiway.  These hangars are too close to the new taxiway location to allow aircraft to transit the area safely.  The plan is to relocate these hangars to another location on the Airport as permitted in the ground leases.

Construct Taxiway, Phase II (East End of New Taxiway)
This project will complete the work started three years ago when the west portion of the parallel taxiway was relocated.  The taxiway does not meet Federal Aviation Administration standards because it is too close to the runway.  This project will correct that major safety deficiency.

Demolition of Runway Object Free Area Building
The demolition of the Airport Administration building is also necessary to allow for relocation of the east portion of the parallel taxiway.  The building is directly in the path of the new taxiway.
 

Next Steps:

  • Construct Apron Area
  • Install Water Service to South Apron
  • Install Sanitary Service to South Apron
  • Construct Access Road to New Terminal Area (Phase II)
  • Construct Replacement Hangar Pavements
  • Construct Auto Parking
  • Reconstruct and Widen Runway