A contractor has started working on a £7m project to extend the lifespan of the runway at the Mount Pleasant Complex (MPC) airfield in the Falkland Islands until it can be fully re-laid in the coming years, the British Government reported Monday.
The project, which is expected to take about three months, includes repainting runway markings in reflective paint, replacing airfield signage and adding lights, and coating the runway asphalt with a layer of bitumen to extend the life of the runway.
The £6.96m project was awarded to Mitie in June 2022 and will be undertaken by sub-contractor Gatwick Construction.
The project team will work at night to avoid disruption. The team will liaise closely with MPC staff on a daily basis. Work has been carefully planned to ensure there is no impact on airfield operations and flights can continue as scheduled. This is particularly important given that Mount Pleasant Complex is used for the airbridge flights to and from the UK, for LATAM Airlines flights connecting the Falkland Islands to South America (Punta Arenas in Chile), as well as by the Falkland Island Government Air Service (FIGAS) which connects MPC with the outlying islands of the Falklands.
DIO Project Manager Robert Handford said: It’s exciting to begin this important work at Mount Pleasant Complex. Infrastructure projects in the Falkland Islands are complicated by the need to transport the necessary equipment by air or container ship, adding complexity to the preparations and requiring meticulous planning. It’s a testament to great teamwork between DIO, Mitie, Gatwick Construction, and MPC personnel that everything is going according to plan.
Brian Talbot, Managing Director, Central Government & Defence, Mitie, said: As proud supporters of the British Armed Forces, we are delighted to build on our long-standing relationship with DIO through the refurbishment of the Falkland Islands runway at the Mount Pleasant Complex. As a critical piece of infrastructure on the estate, our work on this project will help protect and extend the lifespan of the runway for years to come.