(Sept. 9, 2003) -- LB Airport was forced close its main diagonal Runway 30/12 at roughly 4 p.m. Sept. 9, which is scheduled to remain closed until roughly 6 a.m. Sept 10 for the equivalent of sudden pothole repair.
Within minutes of the announcement, LBReport.com posted an advisory on its front page and sent alerts to its main email subscriber list.
LBReport.com has learned that that the closure was needed to fix a large hole (5ft wide, 2 in deep) that surfaced on the main runway. It required more than usual "in house" repairs and involved a separate construction crew.
Closing Runway 30/12 effectively diverts large commercial flights onto Runway 25R, which aligns roughly with Monlaco Rd/Conant St. on approaches. On takeoff, Runway 25R aligns roughly with 36th St. in the Los Cerritos area.
25R is a smaller neighborhood runway roughly 60% the length of main Runway 30/12, usually used by smaller planes.
When used in reverse wind conditions, the same runway is called 7L...and was used for an unusual reverse wind takeoff over northern ELB on Sept. 9 at roughly 6:35 p.m. That brought several neighbors out of their houses in the south of Conant area...as did a FedEx incoming flight a little earlier.
The diverted flights will exceed 25R/7L's prescribed noise levels...but will not result in noise violations because the 25R/7L diversion is a result of LB Airport actions. (The actual directive to use 25R/7L or any runway comes via the FAA tower.)
As previously reported by LBReport.com, LB Airport says the public can expect additional temporary closures of main Runway 30/12 from time to time over the coming months because Airport officials check the condition of the aging runway when they get reports of anything unusual.
A major repair project for Runway 30/12 is expected to begin in November 2003. City management has chosen to keep the Airport open (instead of closing the Airport for a few days and finishing the repairs in less total time but with more disruption for air carriers). City management's decision means large aircraft will be diverted (by the FAA) for seven full day Saturdays (Fri. 11 p.m.-Sun. 7 a.m.) during June-Aug. 2004. Dates are currently tentative, subject to change. The seven Saturdays are expected to be a maximum, with fewer possible.
As previously reported by LBReport.com, in May 2002 the City Council voted 9-0 (Yes: Lowenthal, Baker, Colonna, Carroll, Kell, Richardson, Grabinski, Webb, Shultz) to get a report discussing the Airport's impacts on residential homeowners. Over a year later, the report has not been presented.