Indianapolis Airport and Wessler Engineering Take Home ACEC Grand Project Award

In partnership with Wessler Engineering Indianapolis Airport Authority’s Stormwater and Deicing Capacity Project Wins ACEC Engineering Excellence Award

Touted as an environmental and logistical success, the Indianapolis Airport Authority (IAA)’s Stormwater and Deicing Capacity project led by Wessler Engineering was recognized with a Grand Project Award by the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC) of Indiana at the 2020 Engineering Excellence Awards earlier in March.

With a 26-month timeframe, the Wessler Engineering project team comprised of 18 partnering firms was selected by the IAA to design and provide construction administration for the $130 million project that enabled FedEx’s seven-year $1.5 billion expansion at the Airport. Improvements included more than 100 million gallons of lined storage in earthen basins, a 10-million-gallon underground storage tank, three tunnels under Interstate 70, more than 50 million gallons per day (MGD) pumping capacity and more than two miles of piping.

When temperatures drop below freezing, airport personnel use aircraft deicing fluid (ADF) to remove and/or prevent ice from forming on planes. The primary component in ADF is propylene glycol, a non-toxic organic compound that exerts a significant oxygen demand as it degrades. Nearby streams and groundwater needed to be protected from ADF-laden runoff.

As the prime consultant and lead designer, the Wessler Engineering team implemented tried and true technologies from water and wastewater projects, but redesigned them to meet the IAA project’s needs, including transport, storage, management of stormwater and deicing runoff from the existing and planned development areas. The team also ensured all discharged stormwater met the Airport’s National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit requirements.