Three New Runways in a Day

Three new runways were opened at major US commercial airports on November 20. Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters flew across the country to open each one in turn. She began with Runway 01L/19R at Washington/Dulles International – its fourth – before proceeding to Chicago/O’Hare to open Runway 09L/27R, its eighth. Finally, she went to Seattle/Tacoma (Sea Tac) for Runway 16R/34L – its third.
At Seattle, the first departure was made by Alaska Airlines’ flight 674 to Denver, at around 3:47pm. This was followed by the first arrival – a United Airlines flight from Chicago (which, coincidentally, had originated from Washington). The new runway at Seattle is expected to reduce arrival delays by up to 80%.