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JWA Changes Runway Designations

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) states that a runway number is the whole number nearest one-tenth the magnetic bearing of the runway centerline, measured clockwise from magnetic north.  Completed in the mid-1960’s, John Wayne Airport’s (JWA) two runways were designated with 19R/1L and 1R/19L.  Due to a gradual shift of the Earth’s magnetic poles, JWA’s runway designations were out of alignment with their magnetic bearings.  

Effective Sept. 18 the runway designations change

Magnetic north rotates about one degree every 12 years, or five degrees every 60 years.  A September 2010 survey found that John Wayne Airport runways held a 16°E magnetic bearing instead of the previous 15°E, thus requiring the change of runway designations to 20L/R and 2L/R.

Aerial View of runways and terminal buildiing in background

The project was scheduled in conjunction with the release of FAA publications that occur every 56 days.  In the wee morning hours of September 18, 2014, the key runway re-designation work took place, which included updating airfield signage and painting new runway markings. In addition to updating FAA publications, pilot charts and navigational aids were also changed to reflect the new designations.

Toltz, King, Duvall, Anderson & Associates, Inc. (TKDA) was the Architect-Engineer for the project and the General Contractor was All American Asphalt.

In the wee morning hours of September 18, 2014, the key runway re-designation work took place, which included updating airfield signage and painting new runway markings.

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John Wayne Airport - Eddie Martin Administration Building, 3160 Airway Avenue, Costa Mesa, CA 92626
949.252.5171   www.ocair.com