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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Tuesday, March 25, 2003

Spring break for students but no vacation for drivers

By Mike Leidemann
Advertiser Transportation Writer

It's a good thing that many university and public school students are on their spring break, an annual respite of sorts for many motorists; otherwise, the delays caused by all the digging, paving, cleaning and building might seem even worse than they really are this week.

Even so, there's something to slow down just about everybody. As New York's Consolidated Edison power company might say if it were transplanted from Manhattan to Waikiki: Dig we must for a better Hawai'i.


Information to help you get around O'ahu:

• TheBus: For schedules and other information, call 848-5555 or visit www.thebus.org.

• Vanpool Hawai'i: 596-8267

• Trafficam: Check out traffic conditions at more than 20 major intersections around Honolulu.

• Road work:

Many of these projects are longterm, ongoing ones that show up on the state's road work announcements week after week; others are special projects that may take only a week or two to finish. Taken together they give you a snapshot of what we're doing to ease congestion, even if we have to add to it a little bit first:

  • On the Pali Highway through the Nu'uanu area, at least one lane is closed in each direction this week for striping and to install signs and rumble strips.
  • On Likelike Highway, lanes are being closed during the day for construction of retaining walls and allowing the median to be rebuilt.
  • On Nimitz Highway near downtown, the bicycle route and sidewalks are closed until further notice for reconstruction work. Two lanes of traffic also are closed at night for waterline work, cleaning and concrete railing reconstruction.
  • On Kalaniana'ole Highway near 'Aina Haina, one of two lanes will be closed for guardrail installations.
  • On H-1 Freeway, two left lanes in the 'ewa-bound direction are closed tonight and tomorrow night to repair damaged Zipper lane barriers.
  • Parts of Sand Island Access Road (and stretches of Nimitz Highway) may be closed at night for drainage, street lighting and traffic signal work.
  • On Moanalua Freeway, single lane closures are planned during the day near Aloha Stadium and Moanalua Road to allow construction of a new lighting system and traffic signal loop detectors.

All in all, it's a pretty typical week of construction in Hawai'i, officials say. They spend more than $100 million a year to keep highways and roads safe and (relatively) free-flowing. Perhaps, you can take some comfort in that the next time you run into one of these lane closures that slow you down.

And remember, it can always be worse. The kids return to school next week.

Mike Leidemann's Drive Time column runs Tuesdays. Reach him at 525-5460 or mleidemann@honoluluadvertiser.com.