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Let's say Runway 16/34 used direction 16 for arrival and 34 for departure. Can the runway close 16 (arrival direction) and still working in 34 for departure?

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    $\begingroup$ Both arrival and departure always happen in the same direction. Either both use 16 or both use 34 but never both directions at the same time. $\endgroup$ – PerlDuck Oct 27 at 10:16
  • $\begingroup$ @PerlDuck you mean it's ok to close one direction and use the other for arrival and departure? $\endgroup$ – Abobakr Oct 27 at 10:25
  • $\begingroup$ It's not only "ok", it's mandatory. But of course a runway can be restricted to take-off only or landing only, like runway 18 in Frankfurt, for example (only take off), or 07L/25R (landing only). $\endgroup$ – PerlDuck Oct 27 at 10:36
  • $\begingroup$ @PerlDuck. Thank you, So, It's not mandatory to close the two directions of the runway when one direction was closed. $\endgroup$ – Abobakr Oct 27 at 10:54
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    $\begingroup$ @PerlDuck Not really true. Some airports have one way in/one way out runways for various reasons (terrain, noise). And runways are commonly used in changing directions depending on the direction of the flight, to save flight time $\endgroup$ – J. Hougaard Oct 27 at 13:47
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I think your premises are wrong. If an airport has a runway 16/34 then either both landings and departures take place in direction 16 (runway 16 is open) or both take place in direction 34.

In most cases both directions are not used at the same time. Which direction is chosen usually depends on the current wind direction so planes depart and arrive with headwind (not tailwind). Which one is open (16 or 34) can change from day to day, even during a day. Usually one of the directions is used most of the time because the wind usually comes from a certain direction. For example, London Heathrow has two parallel runways and in approx. 70 % of the time the wind comes from the west (westerly operation). Hence, they use runways 27L and 27R most of the time for both arrivals and departures.

There are, however, runways that are restricted to either take-off or landings, like runway 18 in Frankfurt, for example (only for take off), or 07L/25R (only for landing). But again, 07L/25R means: either all planes land in direction (on runway) 07 (towards the east) or all land in direction (on runway) 25 (towards the west).

See also:

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  • $\begingroup$ I know we can't use both directions at the same time. What I mean by runway closure here if one direction closed for any reason or obstacles. Is it necessary to close the full runway (both directions 16/34 no flight landed or take-off from this runway) or just close the direction where are the obstacles and use the other direction? $\endgroup$ – Abobakr Oct 27 at 11:56
  • $\begingroup$ @Bakr I'd say "it depends". If 16 is chosen based on the wind direction but cannot be used because of an obstacle that suddenly popped up, it depends on how strong the wind is. An aircraft cannot take off/land with strong tailwind because it then would need a longer runway to gain/lose airspeed and lift. But the runway's length is limited. So with calm wind conditions they might change the runway and switch to 34. If the wind blows faster from behind, switching direction is not feasable and the whole runway would be closed. $\endgroup$ – PerlDuck Oct 27 at 12:35
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    $\begingroup$ @PerlDuck While the 'one direction at a time' policy makes sense at most airports, there are some that routinely takeoff and land in opposite directions. They are not high volume airports (as it's very inefficient) and they are typically constrained by terrain. A good example is KTEX Telluride Regional Airport. It's on the east side of the valley at 9069 feet elevation. Remarks: RY 09/27 RCMD TKOF RY 27; LAND RY 09 AND AVOID POPULATED AREAS. RY 09/27 GRADE -.08 ON RY ENDS, -1.3 TO APPROX MIDPOINT THEN +.75. $\endgroup$ – Gerry Oct 27 at 13:50
  • $\begingroup$ @Gerry Yes, same applies to e.g. Lukla airport with a mountain on one end. But I was under the impression the question was rather about "normal" runways. $\endgroup$ – PerlDuck Oct 27 at 14:05
  • $\begingroup$ For what it's worth, the soaring club at 69G Richmond Field usually uses 18 for glider launches and 36 for glider landings. Of course, if the wind is significant, then we do everything upwind. $\endgroup$ – Terran Swett Oct 28 at 0:37

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