Old Landfill Debris Under Tallahassee Airport Costs City More Than $500K To Clean Up

Apr 28, 2014

Contractors found buried trash while working on a runway at Tallahassee Regional Airport.
Credit Shai Barzilay via Flickr

Construction on Tallahassee Regional Airport’s longest runway hit a bump when debris from an old landfill resurfaced. The city is spending more than $500,000 to remove the garbage.

The City Commission approved the money last week. Part of the airport was built on an old landfill. When planning the runway project, officials had believed the construction area did not overlap with the buried landfill. But Director of Aviation Chris Curry says the construction company found garbage.

“When they started to dig further underneath the ground to run fiber optic cables they ran into some of the debris from the landfill that had to be removed from that particular area in the runway,” Curry says.

Curry says during construction on the airport’s longest runway, air traffic has been shifted to a different runway that was extended to compensate for larger planes.

The longer runway has been under construction since January. The airport is smoothing it out to increase visibility from the air-traffic control tower. Curry says he expects the runway to reopen in about a year.