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Draft Environmental Assessment Public Meeting Ali‘i Drive Culvert Replacement Project

A public meeting on the Draft Environmental Assessment will be held on Monday, May 1, 2017 at the West Hawai‘i Civic Center’s Community Meeting Hale (Bldg. G), 74-5044 Ane Keohokālole Highway, from 5:00 PM to 6:30 PM to:

  • Allow individuals to comment, ask questions, and discuss concerns regarding the Draft Environmental Assessment (DEA).
  • Discuss the County’s plans to replace the double-cell culvert bridging the Waiaha Drainageway on Ali‘i Drive; adjacent to the Kona Tiki Hotel.
  • Present the project’s description, history and scope of work, to construct a new bridge structure that has a wider stream flow opening, a longer span and wider lane bridge above.

A Draft Environmental Assessment was released on April 8, 2017, and can be obtained and viewed by selecting the April 8, 2017 edition of the Office of Environmental Quality Control (OEQC) Environmental Notice at http://health.hawaii.gov/oeqc/.  A copy can also be viewed at the Kailua Public Library.  Comments on the project and its Draft Environmental Assessment are due on May 7, 2017.

If you require special accommodations or auxiliary aid and/or services to participate in this meeting (i.e. sign language interpreter, large print) or for more details on the meeting, please call Barett Otani, Department of Public Works, Information and Education Specialist at (808) 961-8787.

The Reason Right Hand Turn Lane Was Removed From Kilauea Street

Some time in the last few weeks, the County of Hawaii Department of Public Works decided to remove the right hand turn lane at the south end of Kilauea Street where folks use to be able to turn on to Haihai Street.

A few folks have sent me emails asking me to inquire about things and finally I put it out there the other night that I would be inquiring about this change in traffic pattern.

Former Kona Blogger Aaron Stene saw what I posted and was able to inquire with the County of Hawaii Department of Public Works as to why this change happened and he sent me the conversation between two folks in the county who knew what happened and WHY it happened.

Some time ago we got a request from then Councilman, Dennis Onishi.  The request was for a convex mirror for the Kilauea Ave/Haihai St. intersection because people had a hard time seeing turning out onto Kilauea Ave from Haihai St.

After investigating the intersection we concluded that a mirror would be ineffective at improving sight distance, particularly at the higher speeds that cars commonly drive in this area.  The problem we identified was that cars in the right turn lane restricted line of sight.  We proposed to Dennis the idea of terminating the right turn lane and merging traffic into one lane.  Our thinking was that not having the right turn lane would allow turning vehicles to have better visibility of oncoming traffic and turning vehicles would actually be able to pull out a little more to make turns.  Dennis supported our plan so we proceeded to make the change.

The one concern that I have is that driver habits in this area hamper the flow of traffic at this intersection.  Although the yield is for Hilo bound traffic, cars still tend to yield on the Puna bound side.  When this occurs, the Puna bound backup increases because the lane now consists of both right turning vehicles and through vehicles.

Our treatment is not the perfect solution, but the positive impacts of the change should be appreciated by those making turns from Haihai St, as opposed to those on Kilauea Ave.  I heard there are plans to widen the “4 Mile” bridge in a few years.  I think converting the bridge to a two-lane bridge will greatly improve traffic flow in this area.  Speeds will probably go up, but the congestion will be reduced significantly.  The other improvement that may not be possible due to lack of space is a left turn lane on Kilauea Ave for the Haihai St intersection.  Another cause for congestion is people making left turns.

Aaron Takaba

 

Commentary – Good Citizen or “Vexatious Requester”?

Dear Damon,

When it comes to transparency in government, both the requesters and requestees would do well to remember Hanlon’s razor: Never attribute to malice what can be attributed to (what we’ll diplomatically call) misunderstanding, negligence, or incompetence. To do otherwise risks the kind of policy that threatens the foundations of transparent government … as the debate over HB1518 demonstrates.

When first introduced, HB1518 put forth a very worrisome proposal: state agencies could petition the Office of Information Practices to declare someone a “vexatious requester” based on the subjective determination that the requester was a nuisance who made excessive, repetitive records requests. Having been deemed an official irritant by the state, the vexatious person would have their rights to make records requests severely limited.

The problem, of course, is that what a state employee finds annoying, an ordinary citizen can view as “just doing their job.”

And the testimony on the bill made it clear that this ambiguity about what it means to be vexing was at the heart of the controversy over the bill.

While various state agencies attested that they had been subject to serious annoyance by repetitive and “harassing” requesters, defenders of transparency attempted to put the complaints in perspective.

Brian Black of the Civil Beat Law Center for the Public Interest showed that despite claims by UH and the Department of Agriculture that they had been “inundated” with requests that made it impossible for them to keep up with their workload (prompting the need for this law), both agencies were anything but overwhelmed. Black pointed out that of the approximately 18,000 requests fielded by all state agencies over the last three fiscal years, UH only had to deal with 42 non-routine (i.e. other than a transcript) requests and the Department of Agriculture had only 220 non-routine requests.

In other words, certain agencies seem to be vexed by any request at all.

Both Civil Beat and the Grassroot Institute pointed out that the law could be used to target the most common requesters–reporters, think tanks, researchers, and others working in the public interest. Not coincidentally, these are the people most likely to be critical of government. They’re also the ones most familiar with the ways in which agencies–whether through bureaucracy or inefficiency–can stall or obstruct a response, leading to the need for multiple requests. What an agency might call “vexatious,” an experienced researcher could simply call “trying to get the government to release the right information.”

There is good news, however, and a victory to announce. Many watchdog organizations urged the legislature to amend the bill to include due process for anyone in danger of losing their rights under the “vexatious requester” label. The committee listened, and the most current version of the bill requires the agency to plead its case for vexation to a circuit court. The burden is then on the agency to establish that the requester has abused the process established by the Uniform Information Practices Act before the court can limit the requester’s rights.

All of which means that government watchdogs can safely conduct their research of waste and corruption without worrying about being labeled “vexatious.” Though it’s no guarantee that the agencies involved won’t have plenty of other names for us.

E hana kakou (Let’s work together!),

Keli’i Akina, Ph.D.
President/CEO
Grassroot Institute

Pahoa Pool Closed March 30th for Staff Recertification

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation announces the Pahoa Pool will be closed on Thursday, March 30th, all day, due to island-wide staff recertification.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may have caused.  If you should have any questions, please feel free to call the Aquatics Specialist at 961-8694.

Emergency Proclamation for Hakalau Bridge Signed by Mayor Kim Last Month

WHEREAS, Act 111 of the 2014 Hawai‘i State Legislature provides for the establishment of County organizations for emergency management and disaster relief, with the Mayor having direct responsibility and authority over emergency management within the County; and

WHEREAS, Act 111 of the 2014 Hawai‘i State Legislature and Chapter 7, Articles 1 and 2 of the Hawai‘i County Code, establish a Civil Defense Agency within the County of Hawai‘i, and prescribe said agency’s powers, duties, and responsibilities, and Act 111 of the 2014 Hawai‘i State Legislature and Section 13‑23 of the Hawai‘i County Charter empower the Mayor of the County to declare emergencies; and

WHEREAS, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has determined that one of the bridge abutment footings for the County’s Hakalau Stream Bridge over Old Māmalahoa Highway, Bridge No. 001290001100003, 29-3 has been undermined by scouring; and

WHEREAS, the FHWA has communicated to the County that the scouring has undermined the abutment to severely compromise its integrity and stability, which may affect the bridge’s ability to safely carry vehicular loads and creates an imminent threat of the bridge suddenly collapsing; and

WHEREAS, the bridge is open to and traversed by the public for vehicular and pedestrian access; and

WHEREAS, due to the possibility of property damage and/or bodily injury to residents of Hawai‘i Island, and the need for government agencies and/or representatives from the private sector to mobilize and provide immediate services to our island residents, a local state of emergency is authorized pursuant to Act 111 of the 2014 Hawai‘i State Legislature and Chapter 7 of the Hawai‘i County Code.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, HARRY KIM, Mayor of the County of Hawai‘i, do hereby proclaim and declare that a local state of emergency exists on Hawai‘i Island, effective February 9th, 2017, to authorize the County’s Department of Public Works to take whatever actions are necessary and/or appropriate to address this local state of emergency, to continue for 60 days or until further act by this office.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the County of Hawai‘i to be affixed this 9th day of February, 2017, in Hilo, Hawaiʻi.

HARRY KIM

Mayor, County of Hawai‘i

 

Relief Stream Bridge on Kahana Drive to be Repaired

The Relief Stream Bridge No.46-10 on Kahana Drive, approximately half way between Kalehua Road and the Old Māmalahoa Highway will be closed (24-hour closure) for repair work beginning on Monday, March 13, 2017, and will re-open on Thursday, March 30, 2017.  Work is scheduled between the hours of at 8:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., weather and construction conditions permitting.

The repair work involves the rehabilitation of the existing bridge structure which includes replacing the old timber components (railings, decking, stringers, bearing plates, and back plates).

Motorists are advised to use alternate routes as bridge access will be blocked for the duration of the rehabilitation project.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.  If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Third Bridge Currently Being Repaired on Pa‘auilo Mauka Road – Now Requires 24-Hour Closure

The Waika’alulu Bridge No.44-5 located on Pa‘auilo Mauka Road (between Ho’okahua Road and Kukuipapa Road) that is scheduled to be closed for repair work between the hours of  8:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., now requires a 24-hour closure beginning on Wednesday, March 8, 2017 through Friday, March10, 2017.

During the process of removing the bridge railings, it was discovered that the extent of deterioration is worse than previously anticipated, and will require replacement.  Repair work will be more involved and requires a 24-hour closure necessary for the safety of the traveling public.  The closure will also allow bridge work to be completed in a safe and timely manner.  The bridge will re-open on Friday, March 10th approximately 2:00 p.m. or after the work is completed, weather and construction conditions permitting.  Motorists are advised to use alternate routes during the bridge closure.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.  If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787

Traffic Signal Work on Palani Road Intersection

The Department of Public Works Traffic Division will be replacing the traffic signal controller cabinet at the Palani Rd. intersection with the Kona Coast Shopping Center (entrance to KTA) and Lanihau Center entrance on Tuesday, March 7, 2017 between the hours of 8:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., weather conditions permitting.

The traffic signals at the intersection will be shut down and special off-duty police officers will be in the area to facilitate traffic movement.  Motorists are advised to expect delays and to drive with caution.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Kawailani Street Improvement Project to Begin Monday

Jas W. Glover Ltd., contracted by the County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works, will begin preparatory work for the Kawailani St. Improvement Project (Iwalani St. to Pohakulani St.) on Monday, March 6, 2017.

The contractor’s working hours for the project are from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm, Monday through Friday, weather and construction conditions permitting.  Motorists are advised to drive with caution.

The main construction activities on the roadway and intersections will begin in the last week of March 2017 and are estimated to be completed in the 4th quarter of 2018.

The project includes grading, paving; installing drainage improvements, water mains, retaining walls, and street lighting; constructing sidewalks, curbs and gutters, driveways, curb ramps and paved swales; and installing pavement markings and signs.  Traffic signals will be installed on the Iwalani St. and Kawailani St. intersection and on the Kawailani St. and Pohakulani St. intersection.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

For more information, questions or concerns, please call David Sato, Jas W. Glover Ltd. at (808) 469-1909 or Barett Otani, Department of Public Works, Information and Education Specialist at (808) 961-8787.

Three Bridges on Pa’auilo Mauka Road to be Repaired

The Ka’apahu-Waika’alulu Gulch Bridges No.44-2, No.44-3 and the Waika’alulu Bridge No.44-5 located on Pa‘auilo Mauka Road, between Ho’okahua Road and Kukuipapa Road, will be closed for repair work between the hours of  8:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. beginning on Thursday, March 2 , 2017 through Friday, March 10, 2017, weather and construction conditions permitting. 

There will be no work on the weekend and the bridges will re-open at the end of each workday by 2:00 p.m.  Motorists are advised to use alternate routes during the bridge closure hours.

The repair work involves the rehabilitation of the existing bridge structure which includes replacing the old timber components with new wood preservative treated components. 

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.  If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Mauna Kea Recreation Area Closed Wednesday and Thursday

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation announces that the Mauna Kea Recreation Area is closed beginning Wednesday, February 22 through Thursday,February 23. This closure is due to aerial eradication activities occurring on neighboring properties.

The Department of Parks and Recreation apologizes for any inconvenience the closure may cause. The park will reopen for normal operations on Friday, February 24, 2017.

For more information please contact Charmaine Kamaka at 961-8311.

Waika’alulu Gulch Bridge Repair Feb. 27th – March 1st

The Waika’alulu Gulch Bridge No.44-6 (TMK:4-4-009:009) located mauka of Highway 19 on Ka’apahu Road, near the intersection with Apelanama Road, will be closed for repair work between the hours of at 8:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. beginning on Monday, February 27, 2017 through Wednesday, March 1, 2017, weather and construction conditions permitting.

The bridge will re-open the end of each workday by 2:00 p.m.  Motorist are advised to use alternate routes during the bridge closure hours.

The repair work involves the rehabilitation of the existing bridge structure which includes replacing the old timber components with new wood preservative treated components.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.  If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Mauna Kea Recreation Area Closed Until Further Notice for Maintenance Issues

The Hawai‘i County Department of Parks and Recreation announces that the Mauna Kea Recreation Area is closed on until further notice due to maintenance issues.

The Department of Parks and Recreation apologizes for any inconvenience the closure may cause.

For more information please contact the Brittany Kaleohano at 961-8311

 

Hawaii County Parks and Recreation Cuts Water Use

Due to mandatory North Kona water restriction requirements from the Department of Water Supply, the Hawaii County Parks and Recreation Kona Parks Maintenance Division has curtailed the irrigation schedule from daily watering to twice a week only at the following facilities:

  • William Charles Lunalilo Playground at Pualani (2 fields)
  • Old Airport Park (5 fields)
  • Honl’s/Wai’aha Bay Beach Park
  • Hale Halawai
  • Pāhoehoe Beach Park
  • Ali’i Kai Park
  • Harold H. Higashihara Park
  • Kona Hillcrest Park

The irrigation schedule was changed on January 12, 2017, the same day the water restriction notice was issued.

Although the restriction requires 25% reduction in use, the Kona Parks Maintenance Division water use will be cut by more than half according to the new schedule.  In addition, Parks District Superintendent Dennis Riordan says, “we will monitor our grass, and, if possible, reduce even more. We will also irrigate only at night, and closely monitor the showers, sinks and toilets for leaks.”

Parks and Recreation Director Charmaine Kamaka said, “The County of Hawaii wants to lead by example, and we are working with the Department of Water Supply to take proactive steps to reduce water use as much as possible.”

Māmalahoa Highway Roadway Improvements – Iona Court to Mana Road

The County of Hawai‘i  Department of Public Works Highways Division will begin resurfacing work on the Māmalahoa Highway beginning at Iona Court and proceeding towards Mana Road on Monday, January 23, 2017 to approximately Friday, February 3, 2017.  Work is scheduled approximately between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, weather and construction condition permitting, and it may be occasionally modified to facilitate the work.

Motorists are advised to expect delays and to drive with caution as heavy vehicles will be in the work zone.  Alternating lane closures will be in effect and at a minimum, one lane of travel (for two way traffic) will be provided at all times through the construction area.  Special off-duty police officers will be posted in the area to facilitate traffic movement.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please contact Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

North Kona Residents MUST Reduce Water Consumption by 25%

This is a Department of Water Supply water notice for customers in the North Kona area.  Due to ongoing repairs to wells in North Kona, a water restriction notice is being issued.

Customers must reduce water consumption by 25 percent.

For a list of ways to reduce water use, please go to our website at www.hawaiidws.org.  Your cooperation is greatly appreciated in using water sparingly at this time.  Once again, this is a water restriction notice for North Kona. For further information, please call 322-0600 during normal business hours, 7:00 to 3:30.

Punahele Street Closed for Road Construction Project

Starting on Monday, January 9, 2017 through Saturday, January 21, 2017, roadway reconstruction work will be done on the mauka (western) half of the intersection at Komohana Street and Punahele Street.   Work is scheduled between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., Monday through Saturday, weather and construction conditions permitting.

Due to construction activities, Punahele Street will be closed (24 hour closure) to thru traffic from Komohana Street to Punawai Street.   Only local traffic will be allowed in and out of this section of Punahele Street (near Punawai St.).

The County of Hawaii and the Contractor apologizes for any inconvenience and request that all drivers use caution when traveling through the area.  Should there be any comments or questions, please contact the County of Hawaii, Department of Public Works at (808) 961-8321 or Yamada and Sons, Inc. at (808) 933-8434.

Komohana St. Reconstruction Project Update

Reconstruction work will continue this week at the Komohana Street and Waiānuenue Avenue intersection between the hours of 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., weather and construction conditions permitting.  No work will occur on the upcoming New Year’s holiday weekend.

The intersection will remain open and the contractor will work on one approach at a time with Special off-duty police officers directing motorists around work area.

Motorists are advised to expect delays and are encouraged to use alternate routes.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please call Yamada and Sons, Inc. at (808) 933-8434 or Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Road Closed to Thru Traffic on Haihai St. Between Iwalani St. and Laula Rd.

Haihai St. between Iwalani St. and Laulā Rd. will be closed to thru traffic beginning at 7:00 a.m. on Thursday, December 22, 2016 to 3:00 p.m. on Friday, January 6, 2017.  Only local and golf course traffic will be allowed access.

The purpose of the closure is to install a new box culvert and waterline tie-ins for the Haihai Fire station project, weather and construction conditions permitting.  This closure is necessary to complete the installation in a timely manner and for the safety of the traveling public.

Motorists are advised to expect delays and are encouraged to use alternate routes to avoid the work area. Special off-duty police officers will be posted in the area to facilitate traffic movement.

The County of Hawai‘i Department of Public Works apologizes for any inconvenience this may cause and thanks the community for their patience and understanding.

If there are any questions or concerns, please call Barett Otani, Information and Education Specialist, at 961-8787.

Mayor Kim Takes Oath of Office – Outlines Past Accomplishments

Mayor Harry Kim took the “Oath of Office” at the Hawaii County Inaugural Ceremonies on Monday, December 5th at the Hilo Civic Center.

Soon after, the Hawaii County website changed to reflect the new mayor’s vision with a statement from him on the side of the website along with a couple announcements talking about what he accomplished the previous time he was in office:

The following are some highlights of my previous administration from 2000-2008. The key at the bottom of the post indicates what level of involvement we had from identifying a site, negotiating, conducting an EA, acquiring a site, preliminary planning, obtaining funding, planned, funded, construction started, to construction completed.

Budgeting Through Hard Times & Good Times

In 2000, the economy was bad, and it soon got worse after 9/11/01. Immediate mid-year budget cuts were required and taken. A tax rate increase was passed in May 2002 just to maintain current services. Property values started increasing around 2004, so relief for homeowners was proposed and passed:

  • 3% cap on increase in value per year
  • Higher exemption based on % of value
  • Improved Homeowner Dedication program

Also proposed were revisions to agriculture tax laws for fairness and relief. As property values continued soaring, we prepared for future hard times:

  • Created and proposed funding reserves
  • Created “Rainy Day” Fund
  • Disaster & Emergency Fund
  • We were also able to address long needed priorities and programs that were neglected during many years of hardship.

In November 2008 – County’s bond rating by Standard & Poor’s was upgraded due to sound financial management.

Environment

HI5 redemption (“bottle bill”) When bill was proposed at legislature and seemed unlikely to pass, Hawai‘i County offered to be a “pilot program” to promote passage.

Recyling

  • Hired first Recycling Coordinator
  • Increased land ll diversion from 13.9% in 2001 to 29.1% in 2008
  • Established at 19 transfer stations

Reuse Center

  • First one developed at Keaau Transfer Station, 2003

Hilo Landfill

  • Increased life by up to 10 years

Scrap metal

  • Established long-term contract for scrap metal recycling to encourage private investment – succeeded in eliminating decades-old scrap metal piles

Programs & Initiatives

2005 General Plan

  • Included “important ag lands” designation
  • Community Development Plans

Free bus rides

An economic stimulus, as free bus rides allowed those who use the bus to spend more money on family and other things

Aging and Disability Resource Center

First in state, bringing together agencies dealing with seniors and caregivers in a single facility

Community Development Plans

Initiated & adopted

  • Kona (2005-2008)
  • Puna (2006-2008)
  • North and South Kohala (2007-2008)

Shoreline public access

  • Ten miles new public access in N. Kohala
  • Three miles new public access in Pepeekeo
  • Kohanaiki compromise, new park
  • Donation of Hakalau Mill site
  • Honl’s (Waiaha) beach park, Kailua-Kona
  • Honuapo, 145 acres purchased
  • Waipio Ranger Program

“Concurrency”

Concept introduced in 2004

Fiber optic

Upgraded County’s telecommunications network with fiber optic

Waste to Energy

Followed the County’s Integrated Solid Waste Management Plan and pursued a waste to energy project. Issued a nationwide RFP and the final selection of Wheelabrator was made after committee review. Project fell short of implementation because of Council concern over costs.

Public Safety

During the second term, County was able to finally address long-unmet needs for increased police and reprotection, especially
in the fast-growing districts of Kona and Puna. Personnel shortages were caused by the many years of hiring freeze due to the extreme revenue shortages of the 1990s and early 2000s. We were able to support department requests for new positions:

  • Police – Added 143 new positions
  • Fire – Added 141 new positions

Buildings

  • West Hawaii Civic Center (2)
  • Aupuni Center (1)
  • Pahoa Fire Station (2)
  • Pahoa Police Station (4)
  • County Building Renovation (2)
  • East Hawaii Detention Facility (1)
  • Makalei Fire Station Site (6)

Roads

  • Keanalehu-Manawalea Connector Road (2)
  • Ane Keohokalole Highway (prelim planning) (5)
  • Puainako (Saddle Road) Extension (1)
  • Kuakini Highway, Palani to Hualalai (1)
  • Palani Rd Improvements at Kealaka’a St (2)
  • Mamalahoa Hwy Impr, Honalo to Captain Cook (2)
  • Pohoiki Road Realignment (1)
  • Waikoloa Emergency Road (1)
  • Mamalahoa Resurfacing, S. Kohala (1)
  • Mud Lane Resurfacing (1)
  • Puako Escape Route (1)
  • Coastview/Wonderview-Palisades connectors (2)

Parks

  • Pohoiki/Isaac Hale Beach Park Improvement (1)
  • Reeds Bay Beach Park Improvements (2) West
  • Hawaii Veterans Cemetery Expansion (1)
  • Waiaha Beach Park (Honi’s) (1)
  • Pahoa park land – 50 acres purchased (1)
  • Pu’umaile/Lehia Beach Park (King’s Landing) (1)

Other (Managed by DWS)

  • HOVE Water Well (State funded) (2)
  • Island-wide Water Spigots (2)
  • Kona Coastview/Wonderview Water I.D. (1)

Infrastructure Key

  1. Planned, funded, construction complete
  2. Planned, funded, construction started
  3. Site identified and acquired, master plan approved
  4. Site identified and acquired, planning phase
  5. Preliminary planning and EA done so ready to go
  6. Site identified, in negotiations

Civic Projects:

Kona Community Development Plan (CDP)

Initiated the General Plan’s intent of community development plans that provide a forum for community input into managing
growth and coordinating delivery of government services.

  • 2005: Kona selected as the first of seven geographic districts to begin the process of creating a CDP.

    The process involved hundreds of meetings and thousands of individuals.

  • 2008: Kona CDP adopted by ordinance, and the work of the Action Committee continues.

West Hawai‘i Civic Center

Identified the need to bring County services together in one place and prioritized the construction of a new West Hawai‘i civic center. Extensive community input guided the design of the facility as a “gathering place”, resulting in an inviting and energy-efficient civic center that received LEED Silver certification.

  • 2002: Site selected; land acquired from State by E.O. 3952
  • 2005: Contract awarded for design and community input
  • 2008: $50.5M of County funds committed for design/build contract; groundbreaking in October
  • 2011: Construction completed

Road Projects

The following projects were initiated by the Kim Administration and were in various stages of completion by the end of 2008:

Keāhole to Hōnaunau Regional Circulation Plan:

Completed in 2003, this plan comprehensively analyzed options to address the growing commuter traffic from Ka’u and South Kona traveling through North Kona. The recommendations were incorporated into the Kona CDP and is the foundation for
Kona road projects.

Ane Keohokalole Highway:

The Keāhole to Kailua Development Plan introduced the concept of a Mid-Level Road in 1991. In 2007 started engineering and an environmental assessment. In 2008 the Kona CDP officially recognized this road as a priority. These actions positioned
this project to qualify for federal stimulus funding.

Keanalehu-Manawalea Connector Road:

This road connects the Villages of La‘i ‘Ōpua, Kealakehe Elementary School, Kealakehe Intermediate School, Kealakehe High School, and the Kealakehe houselots to reduce the travel times for school children. In 2007 secured funding and started construction.

Kuakini Highway Improvements:

This project widened Kuakini Highway from two to four lanes from Palani Road to Hualālai Street. Weekly meetings were held among the contractor, Public Works staff, and the community. Completed in 2006.

Palani Road Safety Improvements at Kealaka‘a Street:

This project realigns Kealaka‘a Street to intersect with Palani Road and Palihiolo Street with a traffic light. In 2006 funds secured and construction started.

La‘aloa Avenue:

This project improves mauka-makai connectivity between Ali‘i Drive and Kuakini Highway for traffic flow and emergency evacuation purposes. In 2004 secured funds for engineering, environmental assessment, and land acquisition. In 2008 final environmental
assessment culminated months of meetings with the community; funding secured for construction.

Māmalahoa Bypass:

Negotiated with the Hokuli‘a developer to grant an easement to the County for the use of the Māmalahoa Bypass on a limited basis for southbound afternoon traffic. Introduced amendments to the rezoning ordinance and traffic code to allow use of Haleki‘i Street as a connector prior to the opening of entire bypass to Nāpō‘opo‘o, and specify improvements to Ali‘i Drive and Haleki‘i Street to accommodate the increased traffic.

Traffic Flow Improvements:

Completed a number of smaller projects to improve traffic flow on existing streets — Hina Lani/Queen Ka‘ahumanu Highway, right turn lane; Hina Lani/Māmalahoa Highway, traffic signal; Kaiminani/ Queen Ka‘ahumanu and Kaiminani/Māmalahoa Highway, right turn lanes; various improvements to Māmalahoa Highway, Honalo to Captain Cook.

Housing, Water, & Public Safety Projects

“A Friendly Place” for Homeless:

When previous attempts to locate a homeless service center and shelter faced community resistance, the Administration relocated a County baseyard in the Kailua Industrial area to build a homeless intake and service center. The structure was donated by developer Stanford Carr.

Emergency Housing for Homeless:

The Administration initiated a homeless shelter on the Friendly Place site. In 2008 a partnership between the County, State and HUD allowed construction to go forward.

Kaloko Housing Program:

This project provided decent, safe and sanitary housing and support services to qualified homeless families with children. This was an urgent need due to the pending closure of the Kawaihae transitional housing. In 2006 secured the site by working with the private developer of the Kaloko Industrial Park, TSA Corporation, to acquire eight acres of land along Hina Lani Street.

Kona Coastview/Wonderview Water System Improvement District:

Responded to a community’s outcry for assistance through an innovative partnering of County and federal resources. This project constructed a County dedicable water system serving 437 Kona households to replace aging private water systems and leakage-prone
“spaghetti lines”.

Mākālei Fire Station:

Upon determining a previous site as too costly and not suitable, in 2007 secured a site donated by a landowner with assistance of Mr. Yamamoto and Mr. Lynch. In 2008 Final EA published.