The City of Hereford and TxDOT Aviation worked together to program a project that consisted of reconstructing an existing asphalt taxiway and apron that had reached its serviceability life. The pavement has severe transverse and longitudinal cracking that had been sawed out and replaced with new asphalt pavement. Over time, the edges of the cracks that had been sawed out had expanded and created depressions in the pavement surface that started to hold rainwater. Crack seal material and an additional slurry seal was placed on the pavement surface, to keep the existing cracks from expanding but that effort failed to keep the pavement from deteriorating.

PSC was hired for the design of the reconstruction but the most challenging portion of the project was the evaluation of the apron and taxiway drainage system. During the preliminary design phase, PSC noticed that the pavement areas that were depressed, correlated with areas that did not drain properly during rainfall events. This lead to a discussion with PSC, the City of Hereford and TxDOT Aviation about the complete redesign of how rainfall drained from the taxiway and their main parking and fueling aprons. The current slopes of the taxiway allowed for rainfall to drain towards the terminal building, into valley gutters, which conveyed the stormwater towards surface drains as far as 300-feet away. The long length the stormwater needed to travel, coupled with the flat slopes of West Texas, led to areas that did not drain properly.

Knowing that any new pavement that is placed will eventually start to deteriorate prematurely, PSC recommended that the apron and taxiway be lowered by as much as 3 feet in some areas to facilitate drainage towards the airport’s existing infield drainage system, rather than the drainage system on the sides of the aprons. The redesign of the apron also included lowering three drainage inlets and the installation of two additional inlets. The same design team that accomplished this taxiway and apron redesign will be used in the design and analysis of Taxiway A. It is understood that the new taxiway will be in the vicinity of ATS’s infield drainage system, located just south of the intersection of Runway 13-31 and Runway 4-22. The experience and design expertise used on the Hereford Municipal Airport project would be utilized on this future project for ATS.