6th January 2011 – London Oxford Airport’s runway has now been reclassified as Code 3C following extensive works to relocate navigational aids, remove obstacles both upon the airfield and on the approaches and enhance the clear and graded strips either side of the runway.
Although the physical length of the paved runway (1552m) has remained unchanged for well over two decades, albeit both strengthened and widened in 2007, the licensed (or declared) length has been limited to that permitted by its prior classification as a Code 2C runway (and pre 2007 Code 2B) – 1319m (with UK CAA 10% dispensation).
Code 3C status applies to runways with declared take-off distances (TODA or ASDA) of between 1200m and 1799m with widths from 30m to 45m. In practical terms, it permits the commercial operation of aircraft with wing spans up to, but not including 36m (118ft). It also permits consideration being given to the use of available paved starter extensions beyond the thresholds, subject to the 1799m overall limit.
James Dillon-Godfray, Business Development Director noted ‘This shows our ongoing commitment to enhancing the capabilities of the airfield and giving operators an environment which allows for their diversification, business growth and positive evolution at what is the only commercial airport between Heathrow and Birmingham.’
Ultimately, this potentially improves aircraft capabilities out of the airport with increased range or passenger loads, whilst signifying an overall safer environment in terms of obstacle avoidance and clear areas either side of the runway.