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Winston Churchill Avenue

Winston Churchill Avenue is one of the busiest roads in the British overseas territory of Gibraltar. The avenue cuts directly across the runway of the Gibraltar airport. If having to be cautious of other drivers wasn't enough, on Gibraltar's Winston Churchill Avenue you have to watch out for planes too.

This arterial road intersects the airport's runway at surface level. It’s one of the world's airport runway intersecting a road (there’s another in Tasmania). What probably makes it most unique is having the main road connecting Gibraltar to Spain, Winston Churchill Avenue, go right over the runways. The road cuts through the airport, used by passenger and military planes alike. It's the only road connecting Gibraltar to Spain and is by far, Gibraltar's busiest road so there's no escaping the drive among jumbo jets if you want to enter or exit the territory by road. Every time an aircraft lands, the road is closed for a few minutes and railroad-style crossing gates hold back the cars.
The airport was constructed during World War II. It’s considered to be in the top 5 for the most dangerous airports to land or take off, because its relatively short runway with the sea at each end. The runway crosses the main road into town, so when an aircraft needs to use it the barriers come down to stop traffic and pedestrians - just like at a railway crossing!

 

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