Summary of Highway 130 Meeting – Statements from HDOT Officials (Day 1)

I meant to post this when it got posted on the KPAG website.  I see that the summaries of more recent meetings have still not been posted.

The December meeting was held over two days and lasted about 7 hours in total time.  As soon as they have posted the most recent January meeting, I will also post the summary here as well.

• 1) Complete Purpose and Need Statement; 2) Refine and confirm the “Universe of Alternatives” for the project; and 3) Provide technical discussion on various elements.
I. Welcome and Remarks – Jiro Sumada, Hawaii Department of Transportation (HDOT) Deputy Director Mr. Sumada opened the meeting. He reminded the Kea‘au-Pāhoa Advisory Group (KPAG) and participating public that if there are additional ideas or comments that come up after the meeting, they can be submitted via the project website (

The following representatives of the project team were present:
Hawai‘i State Department of Transportation (HDOT) – Ken Tatsuguchi, Robert Miyasaki, Stanley Tamura, Nelson Sagum, and Dina Lau with the Planning Branch; Robert Taira from the Hawaii District Office; and Peter Chan with the Traffic Branch; SSFM International, Inc. – Cheryl Soon, Robin Barnes, Austen Drake, Heather Forester, and Genevieve Runningwind; Learning Unlimited – Facilitators Barbara Lively and Diane Gentry; and Geometrician Associates – Ron Terry.
The following members were present:
Name Group
Larry Brown County of Hawaii Project Manager for PRCP and PCDP
Oliver English W.H. Shipman, Limited
Neil Erickson Architect, Planner, Community Service Member, and Cyclist
Dina Lau HDOT
Keith Lawrence Sitting in for Frank Lawrence
Manny Mattos Resident & Retired Police Officer
Jon Olson Puna Traffic Safety Committee & PCDP Chairman & Sierra Club
Big Island Chapter, Moku Loa Group
Wesley Owens VP of Orchidland Association and Cyclist
Jennifer Perry Resident of Kapoho and Produce and Flower Transporter
Nelson Sagum HDOT
Elizabeth Salfen PCDP Community Liaison & PMAR Working Committee; and
Weed and Seed
Damon Tucker Friends of Puna’s Future
Absent Members included: Fred Blas, Susan Cordell, Faye Hanohano, and Emily Naeole.
Members that have resigned include: Kehaulani Costa, Bill Davis, Lorraine Godoy, Malcolm Saxby, and Roy Takemoto.
Friends of the Advisory Group and public participants in attendance included: Maritta Arita, Gail Clarke, Rob Tucker, Hunter Bishop, J Yoshimoto, Sanoe Kauhane, Bobby Lee Jr., Kimo Lee, Kristin Wohlschlagel, Frankie Stapleton, Elizabeth Weatherford, and Tim Rees.
II. KPAG Meeting #3 Re-cap – Cheryl Soon, SSFM International, Inc. Project
Manager Ms. Soon revisited the Environmental Review Process and Process for Developing Alternatives (Attachment 1). The KPAG is currently defining criteria for selecting a reasonable set of alternatives.

Questions were accepted from KPAG Members.
The first question asked was, is the KPAG looking at short term or long term goals?

It was stated that the KPAG’s primary function is to look at long term goals, but some immediate action is included. Ideally, one would want each goal to build on another. The most prominent project that is going on concurrently is the morning shoulder lane conversion. There is still discussion if the project will produce a permanent lane improvement or a shoulder improvement.

The second question asked was, how flexible is the budget for the Kea‘au-Pahoa Road Improvements project?

It was stated that there is currently no cash in hand for the
construction of the project, but the first year of the project is likely to be funded.

III. Purpose and Need and Criteria for Selection – Diane Gentry, Facilitator
A packet showing the progression of the Purpose and Need Statement was distributed (Attachment 2). KPAG Members deliberated the content and wording; furthermore, a revised version of the document will be presented at part two of KPAG Meeting #4 to be held Tuesday, December 9, 2008. Then KPAG members were asked to vote next to the purpose and need category that was most important to them.
IV. “Universe of Alternatives” Work Session
KPAG Members and Friends broke into three groups. Each group was to use the various matrices (Attachment 4) to refine and confirm the Universe of Alternatives. Matrices included: 1) Elements of alternatives; 2) Alternatives developed by breakout groups; 3) Combination Alternatives 4) Universe of Elements by section of the road.

After discussion was complete, a representative from each group was selected to report back. Matrices will be revised to reflect the discussions; furthermore, a revised version of the document will be presented at part two of KPAG Meeting #4 to be held Tuesday, December 9, 2008.

V. Intersection Treatments
Mr. Robert Miyasaki with the HDOT, Highways Division, Planning Branch presented on intersection improvements that included traditional intersection treatments and roundabouts (Attachment 4). All intersection treatments, including roundabouts, will be considered for the Keaau-Pahoa Road.

VI. Questions and Comment: Open to all Attendees
The following questions were received:
A. Bobby Lee Jr. of Hilo asked, “Will driveways left-turn be slow, into and out of private driveways?”
B. Frankie Stapleton of Nanawale Estates asked, “Have any of the DOT planners
read the 5 or 6 specific points in the Puna CDP report regarding park-n-ride

C. Tim Rees, a Puna resident, asked, “I heard the County recently received a grant for an intermodal Transportation Planning position to specifically address and advise on pedestrian pathways, bicycle pathways, etc. on transportation projects. Will that person be interacting as an active participant in this group?”
RESPONSE: No one from that specific group has been contacted. HDOT
has a bicycle and pedestrian coordinator.

(there were also 4 pages of attatchments that we received at the meeting that were not on the website)

For more info on the project, click here

One Response

  1. Could you clear up a discrepancy in the above? Emily Naeole is listed as both attending and a no-show.

    Damon – Thank you for noticing that. I cut and pasted from the acrobat file. The formatting turned out funny and I tried to patch things back together. It was a simple error and has been fixed. For the official document, you can view here

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