Centralia Airport

Ontario, Canada


Airport uses Tensar GlasGrid products for over 30 years.

  • Owner/Developer: Ontario Development Corporation 
  • Design Engineer: Paragon Engineering
  • General Contractor: Cox Construction
Client's Challenge

 In 1992 the Ontario Development Corporation, which had recently acquired the airport, decided to undertake a rehabilitation effort to bring the facility up to current standards. 

A combination of irregular maintenance and harsh weather was causing serious cracking of the airport’s paved surfaces. The airport apron was becoming extremely oxidized and brittle due to the harsh climate. Centralia’s highest recorded monthly average temperature was 80°F in July while the lowest was 15°F in January. The surface layer included thermal, alligator, transverse and longitudinal cracks. Further surface degradation was likely to affect aircraft movement and safety. 

The owners considered adding a thicker overlay to the apron, however this approach would have proved very expensive. Experience also suggested that an overlay without reinforcement would provide only a temporary solution since thermal stresses were likely to cause the cracks to eventually reflect back through to the surface.

Tensar Solution

The GlasGrid® Pavement Reinforcement System was recommended as a lower cost, longer lasting alternative to installing a thicker overlay. Reinforcing the apron with GlasGrid 8501 would produce a strong interlayer solution capable of resisting the migration of reflective cracking. 

A return site visit in February 2007 revealed that the GlasGrid System reinforced pavement had experienced only minor cracking after more than 13 years of post-rehabilitation service. Brad Pryde, the design engineer of record on the project stated, “We incorporated GlasGrid 8501 into Centralia Airport’s concrete apron rehabilitation to mitigate the reflective cracking that was anticipated to reoccur in the proposed 3 in. thick asphalt pavement overlay. After 13 years of Canadian weather, the cracking is minimal. We are satisfied with the performance of the GlasGrid product in this application.

In November of 2022, the site was visited again. After 30 years of enduring harsh Canadian weather, the airport apron had experienced cracking. Dean Pettitt, who is a local engineer familair with the harsh winters and GlasGrid products commented, “That’s pretty impressive for 30 years considering the original condition.”