Western Sydney Airport , An International Airport Utilising International Expertise : Fer Mooren

Western Sydney Airport – An international airport utilizing international expertise

Fer Mooren1, Nicol Botha2

1 Airport Pavement Specialist, CEng Civil Engineering, NACO Netherlands Airport Consultants 2 Airport Pavement Specialist, MEng Civil Engineering, NACO Netherlands Airport Consultants


The prestigious Western Sydney International (Nancy-Bird Walton) Airport project (WSA) will open new international connections for NSW. For the Design & Construct airside works, the ACCIONA CPB Contractors joint venture have brought in the international expertise from NACO Netherlands Airport Consultants who, together with lead designer Arcadis Aurecon Joint Venture, have developed the aircraft pavement designs for both flexible as well as rigid pavements.

This paper presents a case study on the rigid pavement design for WSA’s runway and taxiways. It discusses the opportunities and challenges of such project in a design and construct environment, where designer together with the contractor develop commercially viable solutions that fully suit the needs of the Client.

An international design method has been merged with local material and construction practices. A meticulous design strength selection process has been followed, including considerations of long-term strength gain, to optimize the required Cement Concrete Pavement (CCP) thickness for the anticipated fleet of aircraft. Careful attention has been given to the selection of base course material to secure long-term performance of the CCP. Construction specifications have been tailored to suit the capabilities of the Contractor and a full suite of construction details has been developed to ensure compatibility with the Contractor’s construction methods.

The seamless collaboration between the Client (along with their technical advisors) and the Contractor (along with their Designer) have resulted in a very successful design development. This enabled the Contractor to commence construction promptly and in line with the intended completion schedule.

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