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Stene: Frustration over highway hold up

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By Aaron Stene | Special to Hawaii 24/7

The newly christened Daniel K. Inouye Highway is huge improvement over the old Saddle Road. 40.27 miles out of 45.97 miles has been upgraded to federal highway standards.

The remaining 5.7 miles, which is located above Hilo, is on hold.

The acquisition of the right of way is stalled and there isn’t any funding allocated for this phase. Both of these facets go hand and hand. This project can’t be funded unless the right of way is fully acquired.

The state Department of Transportation asked the Land Transportation Division of the State Attorney General’s Office to start condemnation proceedings against the three holdout landowners in 2012.

The State Attorney General’s office hasn’t heeded the HDOT’s request except to ask for more information in July 2013.

I’m deeply frustrated by the lack of urgency in this matter. The last Daniel K. Inouye Highway phase should on a fast track, but its stuck in bureaucratic hell instead.

The state Department of Transportation needs to expedite the land acquisition, so this much-needed project can proceed and Senator Inouye’s vision fulfilled.

Aaron Stene
Kailua-Kona

3 Responses to “Stene: Frustration over highway hold up”

  1. Irregardlessly says:

    For realz?! OMG, you’re in Hawai‘i. Slow down. Chill out. The TWO roads into Hilo (200 and 2000) are plenny fine…way bettah den a lotta other roads on dis island (including the old stretch through Waiki‘i)!

    • Chuck Connors says:

      Ummmm. Not really. The DKI road is actually incomplete. It’s only 90% done. Just a little more would finish. It’s like we bought a Ferrari but the engine has a governor on it.

  2. Aaron Stene says:

    Why shouldn’t this last segment be upgraded to Federal Highway standards like the rest of the Daniel K. Inouye Highway? I, for one, would like to see this last phase materialize. It will eliminate the serious safety deficiencies between m.m 8-11 and
    move cross island traffic to a faster alignment around Country Club Estates.

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