Senator Inouye to Tour Highway and Interpretive Center on the Big Island Wednesday

U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye will tour portions of the $32 million Ane Keohokalole Highway and the adjoining cultural interpretive center Wednesday, Aug. 31 starting at 4 p.m. Participants will gather at Kamakaheha Avenue.

U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye

U.S. Sen. Daniel K. Inouye

The $1 million interpretive center focuses on the culture of the ahupua‘a of Keahuolu through a 16th century farm, or kauhale. The center will also be a repository for artifacts found in the area, and offer a resting place for Native Hawaiian remains. The interpretive center in this culturally rich area is expected to be completed by the end of the year, and was designed by Kari Kimura, a Kona native who attended MIT. The center helps perpetuate assets of the Queen Liliuokalani Trust, which is mandated to oversee the welfare of orphaned and destitute children.

Construction of the Ane Keohokalole Highway is on time and on budget as the contractor nears the paving phase of this project. Underground utilities are essentially completed and sidewalks are about halfway completed. The roadway is graded, and paving should start in early December. Paving is expected to last about eight weeks.

Landscaping has started, along with efforts to protect a dryland forest. Biologists are already propagating native Hawaiian plants to replace those taken in the construction.

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