I’m very disappointed by the lack of progress on two important (and
stalled) Big Island transportation improvements; the second phase of the
Queen Kaahumanu Highway widening and final east side Daniel K. Inouye
These projects will help the Big Island’s struggling construction
industry, but neither has started yet. The second phase of the Queen
Kaahumanu Highway widening was supposed to start in 2008 and be
completed by 2010. However, it’s been held up for the past six years
because of two bid protests and a last minute Section 106 consultation
process, which is still ongoing with no end in sight.
The final east side Daniel K. Inouye Highway phase, on the other hand,
is being held up by a glacial right of way acquisition process. The
Hawaii Department of Transportation has acquired the necessary land for
this project from twelve out fifteen landowners. The acquisition of the
right of way from the remaining three landowners won’t be completed
until September 2015.
Both of these critical highway projects will improve highway safety and
provide much-needed jobs and economic stimulus.