Open letter to Mayor Billy Kenoi and the Hawaii County Council:
As of Wednesday afternoon, Dec. 2, Pahoa residents are adjusting to a new normal, detouring on the original Pahoa Village Road while the roundabout construction is underway on Highway 130. We are all going to have to learn how to plan for the traffic backup that is occurring as a result of this bottleneck that is happening at the ingress and egress to Pahoa Marketplace and also at the intersection of Pahoa Village Road and Kahakai Boulevard.
I would like to urge you to consider opening up the Railroad Avenue detour route you created last year when lava was threatening to inundate Pahoa Village Road.
While, as a small business owner in Pahoa Village, I would like to see more traffic flowing through town, I understand the frustration people are experiencing to be backed up on the highway as they approach Pahoa Village Road, having already experienced the Keaau Crawl on Highway 130 on their afternoon-evening commute. For those traveling to Hawaiian Beaches or Nanawale or down to Kapoho, it might provide a great relief to have another option to get home. This may alleviate the urge to kick the dog, after a long day and a lot of commute time.
Please consider opening up Railroad Avenue between HPP and Nanawale — it’s the right thing to do.
Tiffany Edwards Hunt