Runway Replica - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Intl. Airport (AVP)

Runway Replica - Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Intl. Airport (AVP)
Author: 
Staff
Published in: 
September
2021

One of the most popular paintings at Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport (AVP) strays far from the predictable fare of regional landscapes and local landmarks. It’s the Pennsylvania airport’s primary runway painted to scale—complete with centerlines, threshold markers, airfield signs and authentic edge lights that actually light up. 

“If they ever go out, we’ll have to issue a NOTAM (notice to airmen),” quips Airport Director Carl Beardsley Jr.

The unique project was conceptualized a few years ago by Marketing Director Eric McKitish and spearheaded by Operations Superintendent Pete Payavis, who passed away in 2019. The concept was resurrected after Payavis’ death by Assistant Superintendent Matt Gowat and airport maintenance workers, who painted a miniature version of AVP’s 7,501-foot runway on the floor of the pedestrian tunnel connecting the terminal and parking garage.

Clearly, Payavis understood the inherent appeal that runways have for the general public, because AVP’s painted version quickly became a favorite after it was completed last fall. “It inspires a lot of chuckles, even from people who travel a lot,” Beardsley remarks.

Children, in particular, seemed to be “moved” by the painting. Some even spread their arms like airplane wings and run down the tunnel, pretending to take off.

“It’s really something,” says Beardsley. “Pictures don’t do it justice.”

Subcategory: 
Artscapes

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