Letter: Puna Gridlock After Millions Spent

Dear Editor,

With all the studies out, maybe someone could add up all the hours lower Puna spends waiting in Keaau-Pahoa gridlock, including the hours spent taking your kid to Keaau school when he should be at Keonepoko or waiting in one lane when the lane next to you is open, but it’s already 6:13pm and you will get a ticket if you dare. How many cars x how many people x how much lost time from work x air pollution x gas money x lung damage from inhaling exhaust unnecessarily. Personally, I think it would be great if the Shipman’s would gift Railroad and the beach back to lower Puna. They have enjoyed all the benefits for how long now? It would be very very philanthropic of them. Either that, or we as a land-locked group of many thousands of people could ask our councilmembers to seek imminent domain for the health and welfare of all travelers to this beautiful land, and seek it now!


Sara Steiner

8 replies
  1. Kelly
    Kelly says:

    I just returned from Hilo to Pahoa around 4:00pm.
    Smooth sailing, bottleneck gone!
    (Dear Sara, it’s ’eminent’)

  2. M David
    M David says:

    Thanks for posting this…it has been incomprehensible to me that they invested so much time and resources for a lane that can only be used 2h of the day!!
    NOt to mention the bottle neck that used to be at the exit of Keaau is now well still a bottleneck, just a mile forward when two lanes must merge into one…
    The merging of lanes should have occurred further down the HW, after traffic is diluted (Past HPP, etc…).
    Makes NO SENSE at all!

  3. steve danner
    steve danner says:

    This is the 2nd time in several years that we have suffered gridlock from highway construction, always hoping to get FOUR LANES! We still don’t!!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Sara Steiner
    Sara Steiner says:

    I know Steve, the problem is that there is still basically only one way out of Puna, on a road that has giant phone poles on both sides, which could be an effective trap in the one of those freak storms we seem to be getting more often.

    Kelly, I’m glad you got through at 4:00, I work til at least 5. And in the morning the extra lane closes at 8:00 am – but don’t work til 10 and don’t want to have to leave at 6 to make it smooth.

    And I know the world does not revolve around me, but who decided the timing restrictions for our new lanes? I bet a million bucks they don’t even live on this island, and since they are stuck in 8 lanes like cattle on Oahu, they are laughing at us over here joining the wasting game.

    As regards the idea that Shipman donates Railroad and “his” beach back to Puna, we need a recreation area, that is why they were going to make the Pahoa Park. Now that is being re-designed I guess, maybe we could use that money and go for a nice beach park with camping facilities and ball fields at Shipman that the whole community could use and it would be out of the immediate lava zone!

    The imminent v eminent is a grammer problem that I have and I need to work on that. Unfortunately, I have more pressing matters, and I’m counting on folks knowing what I mean – hopefully! That or the editor corrects spelling and grammar before printing 😉

    Sara xox

  5. Puna Ohana
    Puna Ohana says:

    Your use of immanent vs eminent is irrelevant, MOST people know what you meant. Your point is spot on. HUGE WASTE!
    LOUSY planning. And lame execution. What’s next?
    In a year or two watch them start the next phase, widening from Shower to Ainaloa. They need to THINK AHEAD, and open RR to Rail. Not big old steam engines of past but new hydro-electric, solar, or ? geo-thermal? instead of sending the power generated here to Oahu use it here. Where are the planners with SMART plans? More of the same crap, it’s gonna end up like Kona, Maui, or Oahu.
    Surely if they’re entertaining the idea of a bridge over lava and a blimp, a re-establishment of a railway isn’t so far fetched. The RR bed is still there and they just prepped half of it. Eventually HPP alone will have 10k people, then what?
    You are so right Sara. 😉

  6. Kelly
    Kelly says:

    Dear Sara, vocabulary may not be an imminent issue, but the High Priest or Queen may take your property just because of their eminence.
    Campground idea is great.
    Can we just take the land?

  7. Sara Steiner
    Sara Steiner says:

    Beautiful concept, and it could be landscaped and educate riders about our history in the railcars, instead of pictures of meth mouth. I’m kinda over the geo-thermal thing though, they’ve proved over and over that the don’t care about the people living around the plant who were there first and they don’t/can’t do it safely on a lava/earthquake/fractured land without polluting everything.

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