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Mamalahoa Bypass to be open for 12 hours every day

The Mamalahoa bypass will be open 12 hours a day, seven days a week beginning Monday (June 7), under a new easement agreement between the County of Hawaii and 1250 Oceanside Partners, developer of Hokuli`a.

The bypass will open to traffic in both directions from 6:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

“This agreement is a significant development for commuters and all residents of West Hawai‘i who, instead of being stuck in traffic, will be able to spend more time with their families and in more productive activities,” said Mayor Billy Kenoi. “We are very pleased to reach this agreement with 1250 Oceanside Partners.”

Currently, a large portion of the South Kona community works in either North Kona or South Kohala and commutes daily along Mamalahoa Highway. The new two-lane bypass gives motorists an alternate route between North and South Kona.

Opening this bypass on the 12/7 plan was one of Mayor Kenoi’s priorities upon taking office in December 2008. The Mayor was personally involved in talks with Mauka Kona residents to insure that the opening of this bypass helps meet the critical need for the transportation infrastructure in West Hawaii.

“My administration continues to honor its commitment to opening roads, building new roads, and improving the lives of our residents in West Hawaii,” said Mayor Kenoi, noting that the County broke ground for the new $35 million Ane Keohokalole Highway in West Hawaii on March 30.

The Mamalahoa bypass road was previously opened in one direction for limited hours only under an agreement reached in February.

The bypass is located midway between the shoreline and Mamalahoa Highway. The northern portion of the bypass starts at the southern edge of Keauhou and runs approximately three miles to the bottom of Haleki`i Street in Kealakekua’s Kona Scenic subdivision.”

Blessing of the bypass June 6 was by Billy Paris. From left are Meg Greenwell, Bobby Command, Shawn Suzuki, Gail Masunaga, Aaron Nagata, Mary Command. (Hawaii 24/7 photo courtesy of Margaret Masunaga)

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