The airport was closed without notice on October 1, 2012 by its owner, the Defense Ministry, due to the runway being unsafe and needing repair work. The closure was not coordinated with local or state government. Though the city was connected by winter roads, the loss of air service impaired the delivery of medicines, foods and other essential goods, and in February 2013 boilers in the city went out of service for an extended period. The issue rose to the highest levels of Russian government. Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev said in April 2013 "the Ministry of Defense committed a real mistake to jeopardize the existence of an entire village. This is an outrage.". Negotiations between the Defense Ministry and Yakutia government led to an agreement to Antonov An-24 service starting in June 2013. Reconstruction of the runway in several phases is scheduled for 2013 with completion by about 2015 or 2016.
In July 2014, ITAR TASS reported Roman Filimonov (Head of the Defence Ministry's Construction department), announcing that Russia would be building six military towns in their Arctic region, “These will be closed zones with comfortable living and service conditions,” he said, adding “We’re restoring the infrastructure of the Tiksi airport. We hope that the construction will be completed next year”.