Roll-on/roll-off capacity grows
Matson Navigation Co. Inc. is converting one of its C-9 container ships into a combination vehicle roll-on/roll-off and container vessel.
The conversion of the MV Mokihana is part of a program, begun in 2003, to increase the Hawai'i fleet's roll-on/roll-off capacity. This phase — estimated at $45 million — includes building the garage, expanding interisland barge capacity, improving shoreside facilities and new information technology for auto shipments. It is expected to be completed by mid-2007.
Matson currently has two combination roll-on/roll-off container ships in its Hawai'i fleet. It said it has new multi-year shipping agreements with Ford Motor Co. and General Motors, as well as agreements with Dollar Thrifty Group, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Toyota and Nissan.
ISLAND AIR TO ADD ROUTES
Beginning April 2, Island Air will offer nonstop connections between Kahului, Maui and Lana'i.
Effective June 1, it will offer a nonstop between Lihu'e, Kaua'i, and Kapalua, Maui.
BARNES & NOBLE HAS MAUI PLANS
Barnes & Noble Booksellers has signed a lease to be the first anchor tenant in the planned Lahaina Gateway shopping center on Maui.
The 24,500-square-foot bookstore will be the first Barnes & Noble on Maui.
Lahaina Gateway is a 136,911-square-foot center being developed across the street from the Lahaina Cannery Mall. The center is expected to open in early 2007.
JOBLESS CLAIMS DOWN FOR WEEK
The number of claims for unemployment insurance filed by Hawai'i residents fell to 1,100 for the week ending Jan. 28, down from 1,300 a year earlier, according to the U.S. Labor Department.
Hawai'i accounted for just 0.3 percent of total unemployment insurance claims filed nationally, among the lowest percentages of the 50 states. Hawai'i's unemployment rate of 2.7 percent is the lowest in the country.