C&S Congratulates the Indianapolis Airport Authority on its Envision Platinum Award for Runway 5R-23L and Taxiway D

The Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA) was recently awarded the Envision rating system’s Platinum award for the Runway 5R-23L and Taxiway D Strengthening and Capacity Enhancement project—the first airfield project to ever receive this accolade. Awarded by the Institute for Sustainable Infrastructure (ISI), the Platinum achievement is the highest honor, earned only through an intense commitment to the program’s framework of leadership, quality of life, resource allocation, natural world, and climate and resilience.  

Indianapolis International Airport aerial photo

The IAA, which owns and operates the Indianapolis International Airport (IND), has long been recognized as a sustainability leader in the aviation industry, hosting one of the world’s largest airport solar photovoltaic systems; establishing one of the largest electric airport shuttle bus fleets in the U.S.; adopting innovative sustainable technologies to increase runway strength and longevity; and installing energy efficient lighting and fueling technology on its airfield among other accomplishments.

C&S led the sustainability integration effort for the Runway 5R-23L and Taxiway D project, in partnership with Circle City Aviation Partners, a joint venture of firms led by Kimley-Horn Associates and Woolpert. “IND recognized the potential to have significant positive impact given the scale of the project and the overarching need for the aviation industry to seek out and implement low carbon strategies,” said C&S’s Alexandra Davis. “It has been a unique and rewarding experience supporting the IAA with achieving such ambitious sustainability goals and quite literally moving the needle forward for airports everywhere.”

About the Project

Birdseye view of Indianapolis International Airport Runway 5R-23L

The project involves the strengthening and enhancement of Runway 5R-23L and Taxiway D, critical facilities which support the majority of cargo operations at IND. The project will address the increased demand for air cargo capacity and enhance the resilience of the Airport’s infrastructure used to carry freight and accommodate large cargo aircraft. The pavement will be reconstructed with full-depth Portland Cement Concrete (PCC). Other project elements include installation of an underdrain system, markings, signage, and lighting. Improvements to maximize safety will include the update of electrical infrastructure and navigational aids (NAVAIDs) as well as modifying the runway and taxiway to meet safety standards.

Envision Platinum Award

C&S facilitated a sustainability charrette at the onset of design, engaging with IAA representatives and end users of the airfield infrastructure to identify sustainability opportunities related to climate, resilience, and resource conservation to help advance the team toward its goal of achieving Envision verification. C&S’s sustainability experts were also engaged in all design-oriented meetings. Additionally, sustainability measures will be tracked closely during construction to ensure the project meets all its goals and targets.

Key highlights of the project which contributed to earning the Envision Platinum award include:

  • Adoption of the first-ever FAA approved concrete mix design that includes in-situ carbon mineralization technology to reduce the project’s overall carbon impact, which required significant collaboration with industry partners to accomplish
  • A design that enhances the airport’s ability to support the growing global cargo industry generating construction jobs and the expansion of other businesses
  • Community engagement dialogues to share information about the project and solicit feedback, as well as a creative collaboration opportunity with the Indy Arts Council to create an artwork display on the newly installed fence adjacent to the project site
  • A material reuse and recycling effort that salvaged all 1,080 taxiway edge lights and 88 guidance signs and resulted in a partnership with the Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) Department of Aviation to redistribute the materials to other airports across Indiana as needed
  • Incorporating solar photovoltaic (PV) energy production and battery storage on the airfield which is anticipated to produce all the power needed for the project’s airfield lighting, airfield signage, approach lighting, and navigational aids
  • A climate risk and vulnerability assessment that resulted in adjustments to the project design to meet anticipated increases in extreme heat and precipitation. Design features included upsized stormwater systems to handle heavier precipitation events and a robust under-drain system designed to efficiently remove stormwater from the pavement, to prevent flooding

About C&S’s Sustainability Team

With aviation as its core market, C&S has grown its national aviation practice into a network of more than 120 technical experts dedicated to airport improvement. The firm’s aviation sustainability team is the preeminent authority in aviation sustainability & resilience. Learn more about how C&S is helping airports draw strength from the environment and communities in which they operate at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w3OJAalaA-o.

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