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Stene: Inouye Highway before Kawaihae bypass

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Aaron Stene | Special to Hawaii 24/7

The proposed Daniel K. Inouye Highway extension should remain on the STIP in lieu of the Kawaihae bypass.

Yes, I know the Waimea community has tried to advance the Kawaihae bypass for a very long time. However, I believe the time to construct this highway has passed.

The cost of the Kawaihae bypass has increased to $280 million. HDOT estimated the cost of this project to be about $130 million back in 2009.

I don’t think its prudent to commit this much federal highway funding to one project, especially when there are other highway projects statewide in dire need of funding.

The Federal Highway Trust Fund is practically insolvent. This means there will be less federal highway funds available over the next couple years.

This is why we need to take a long, hard look at what highway projects should move forward and which ones shouldn’t.

I firmly believe constructing a mini-bypass road around the dry side of Waimea, doing safety improvements to the existing Kawaihae Road, and constructing the Daniel K. Inouye Highway Extension will help ease Kawaihae Road’s traffic and safety deficiencies.

One Response to “Stene: Inouye Highway before Kawaihae bypass”

  1. Pellett says:

    Totally disagree with preemption of Kawaihae Road bipass for extension of DKI highway. There needs to be a bipass coming out towards Waimea town side of Mamalahoa to connect via that to DKI. Mamalahoa can be improved in the future for the added Load. I think the Makai extension of DKI is crazy. Kawaihae Road is a horror…dangerous and stretched way past capacity .


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