News: 2,000 local residents visited the Schiphol Neighbour Days

No planes touched down on the Zwanenburgbaan Runway (36C-18C) on the weekend of 6-7 April but a bunch of neighbours did instead! Since the runway is closed for maintenance, we were able to welcome local residents instead. They learned all they need to know about runway maintenance, safety and day-to-day operations at the airport, and around 850 children created chalk artwork on the runway.

Published on: 11 April 2019

Watch the Youtube video

On the runway

Besides children creating their works of art, there was a lot to do and discover on the runway. That included Schiphol's fire service, snow fleet, ambulance service, bird control units and marshallers (people who use hand gestures to guide aircraft into position). Heijmans and Schiphol employees explained all there is to know about runway maintenance. In addition, Air Traffic Control the Netherlands (LVNL) also attended the Neighbour Days and gave attendees the chance to use VR glasses to take ‘virtual tour’ of the Control Tower, and Customs presented some contraband items they had seized.


The Schiphol Neighbour Days were made possible thanks to the efforts of over 90 Schiphol volunteers and 40 volunteers from other organisations at the airport, such as Air Traffic Control the Netherlands, Dutch Customs and Heijmans.

Runway maintenance

The maintenance work on runway 18C-36C is being carried out 24 hours a day by around 200 employees in various shifts. It even continued during the Schiphol Neighbour Days in order to ensure that the maintenance period does not last any longer than strictly necessary. During the runway maintenance, the aircraft will follow the flight routes to and from the Buitenveldertbaan and Kaagbaan Runways. The Zwanenburgbaan Runway is scheduled to reopen on the evening of Monday 22 April.