Fuel Storage & Distribution Program

Since 2016, our team has worked with SAN Fuel Company, an airline consortium and the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority (SDCRAA) in the transformation of the fuel storage and distribution system at San Diego International Airport (SAN).

Our work has included master planning, program management, design and construction. The projects under this program have supported the airlines in meeting current and future fuel demand as the airport undergoes terminal expansion and the fuel delivery system converts to an airport-wide hydrant system.

Hydrant Fuel Piping at Gates 46-47

Capital improvement planning identified the need to move from use of refuelers to a hydrant fueling system. We provided design services for the first hydrant fuel piping installed at the airport, at gates 46 and 47. Construction was timed to take advantage of gate closure for other terminal work.

Airport Fueling Operations (AFO) Building

As plans for a new Terminal 1 progressed, the existing fuel system infrastructure and support facilities within the footprint of the new terminal needed to be relocated. This included construction of a new into-plane fuel operations building and relocating operations to north of the runway, near the bulk fuel storage facility.

Hydrant Fueling Infrastructure for Gates 48-51

A critical component of long-term planning and build-out of an airportwide hydrant fueling system, this project constructed fuel piping and infrastructure for fuel distribution to the west side of the airport and a future hydrant system at gates 48 through 51. The piping provides fuel to the planned West Refueler Loading Facility and the future hydrant system.

West Refueler Loading Facility

The existing refueler loading facility servicing fuel operations to aircraft was within the planned new Terminal 1 footprint. We designed and built a new refueler loading facility at the west side of the airport to prepare for demolition of the existing refueler loading facility. The west facility included five refueler loading stations designed with a spill containment basin, oil water separator and a filtration system to meet stormwater discharge requirements.

Additional Fuel Storage Tanks

This project, a significant milestone long-anticipated by the fuel consortium, included design and construction of three additional 1 million-gallon jet fuel storage tanks. The tanks provide additional storage capacity to better support fueling operations at the airport. With growing flight frequency and airport expansion, insufficient fuel supply was often encountered during busy months. Fuel supply cycles and unplanned pipeline outages also put constraints on fuel supplies. This fuel storage deficiency caused the consortium to import additional fuel via trucking, which came with a cost premium. This project increased the on-hand fuel supply from under two days to over seven days. This positioned the consortium to be less dependent on supply line deliveries and less vulnerable in the event of an unplanned outage. The project included demolition of existing site pavement and utilities, complex ground improvements and soil stability via deep soil mixing to prevent liquefaction in the event of an earthquake, as well as grading, tank and equipment foundation construction, concrete containment walls, the three 1 million-gallon storage tanks, mechanical fuel piping, electrical controls and instrumentation, fire protection system, containment area liner and aggregate surfacing, coating of tanks and fuel piping, and new pavement.

Decommissioning and Demolition of East Refueler Load Rack

Once the West Refueler Loading Facility was complete, the existing east refueler load rack could be decommissioned and demolished to make room for the new Terminal 1. Along with demolition of the five refuel loading positions, all underground fuel piping, communications equipment, spill containment pit, and product recover tank were excavated and removed. An above ground oil-water separator, filtration system and fire protection monitors were demolished.

Upsizing Transfer Line Within Casing Under Runway 

This project included removing the existing transfer line that fed fuel to the demolished east load rack and installing a larger fuel line to support hydrant fuel operations at the new Terminal 1. The challenge was that the existing transfer line and communications were located within a casing pipe under a very active runway. Extensive planning and preparation, along with unique construction methods, allowed the extraction of existing fuel lines, demolition of the communication conduits, and then inspection and cleaning of the existing casing pipe to make it suitable for housing the new fuel line. The new fuel line and conduit system utilized a casing spacer and was successfully installed within the entire 1,100-foot-long casing pipe.


SAN Fuel Company


San Diego International Airport




Fueling & Ramp Services

Fuel Storage Tanks & Distribution

Fuel Truck Loading & Unloading

Hydrant Fueling