FAA Authorizes RDU to Replace its Primary Runway 

Replacement Runway is the Airport’s Signature Capital Project:

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has authorized the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority to seek final permits and begin construction on the replacement of Raleigh-Durham International Airport’s (RDU) primary runway, 5L/23R. The FAA issued a Record of Decision and Finding of No Significant Impact on Aug. 31.  

“RDU’s new primary runway will be the most important two miles of pavement in the Triangle,” said Michael Landguth, president and CEO of the Raleigh-Durham Airport Authority. “It will provide greater economic opportunities for our region by ensuring RDU maintains its transatlantic connections and allowing long-haul aircraft to move more passengers and cargo.” 

The existing 10,000-foot runway was built in the 1980s and needs to be replaced after nearly four decades of use. The replacement runway will be built approximately 537 feet west of the current location to allow the current runway to remain in operation during construction.  The relocated runway will also make room for the future addition of more gates at Terminal 2. 

The Authority and the FAA conducted an Environmental Assessment that defined the purpose and need for the project, analyzed the potential impacts of the project and provided opportunities for public participation, review and comment. The Record of Decision issued by the FAA concludes the federal environmental review process and authorizes the Authority to begin final permitting and construction. 

The new Runway 5L/23R is the signature capital project in the Airport Authority’s Vision 2040 master plan for growth. The FAA previously determined the runway can be built at 10,639 feet, providing more distance for takeoff and landing. The runway replacement is expected to cost more than $500 million and be completed by 2028.  

The Federal Register Notice will publish on September 8.