St. George Municipal Airport

Explained: Here’s what’s under the surface at St. George Regional Airport

 / St. George Spectrum & Daily News

An airport runway that was expected to last 20 years will be torn apart and redone after less than half of that time has passed, generating the obvious question: How could this have happened?

After only eight years of use, the runway at the St. George Regional Airport is scheduled to be excavated, repaired and repaved — causing the airport to close its doors for four months this summer.

St. George Regional will close May 29 while an excavation team digs 17 feet underneath the runway to remove Southern Utah’s infamous and destructive blue clay from beneath its surface. The project is expected to last around 120 days, with the grand reopening scheduled for Sept. 26.