Tuesday, January 23, 2001
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Posted on: Tuesday, January 23, 2001

Kahala traffic talks resume tonight

By Suzanne Roig
Advertiser East Honolulu Bureau

KAHALA — Imagine Kilauea Avenue without stoplights or Kealaolu Avenue with wider sidewalks, bike lanes and a roundabout at Kahala Avenue.

Taking it slow in Kahala

Traffic engineers will discuss ideas for slowing down the speed of traffic in Kahala at 7 p.m. tonight at Kahala Elementary School Cafeteria, 4559 Kilauea Ave. For more information, call City Councilman Duke Bainum at 527-5592.

These are a few of the changes traffic engineers are pitching tonight at a community meeting on ways to slow down traffic in parts of Kahala.

"It’s a new concept," said George Lissandrello, a Waialae-Kahala Neighborhood Board member. "In the past, engineers wanted to speed traffic up."

Tonight’s meeting will be the second with the community on the issue. The first was in October, when residents identified the streets of primary concern.

Residents have complained for more than a year about trucks and tour buses using their neighborhood as a shortcut. They’ve complained about speeders and one resident has had several pets run over by speeding motorists on Kealaolu Avenue. In response, they have formed a Kahala Citizens Traffic Committee that has been working with the city to find solutions.

Engineers will discuss making a small round-about, a circular drive in the middle of an intersection at Moho Street and Makaiwa Street; raising the intersection at Moho and Pahoa streets fronting Kahala Elementary School; an oval median with trees at Kealaolu Avenue and between Moho Street and Farmers Road; expanding the sidewalk to 5 feet wide on Kealaolu Avenue; removing the lights along Kilauea and installing roundabouts and building out the street at the intersection of Kealaolu and Kahala avenues.

"The problem with traffic calming is once you slow people down, it causes congestion and it could frustrate people," said Richard Turbin, a Waialae-Kahala Neighborhood Board member. I’m just worried that today’s panacea might become tomorrow’s traffic congestion device."

Landscaping is a crucial item of these kind of slowing devices that are being proposed, Turbin said. "Right now, Kahala’s a pretty community," he said. "Lots of lush foliage. The streets look nice. A circle in the middle of the street might make things look uglier than prettier."

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