COURTESY OF STATE TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT
Fence repair work along Kamehameha Highway near Waimea Bay is going well; both lanes are slated to open Monday.
Kamehameha Highway set to open both ways Monday
On Monday, a little more than two weeks after a rockslide, motorists will get to use both lanes of Kamehameha Highway at Waimea Bay.
But to finish the repair job the night before, state work crews will close the highway in both directions. From 10 p.m. tomorrow to 4 a.m. Monday, workers will remove barriers used to separate traffic from the construction.
During the closure, buses and emergency vehicles will be escorted through the area.
"We are happy to announce ... we will be able to open the road without restrictions on Monday," said Barry Fukunaga, director of the state Department of Transportation. The temporary repairs were expected to take three weeks, he added.
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
State work crews will finish a temporary protective fence and barrier near Kamehameha Highway at Waimea Bay this weekend. A worker labored near the fence yesterday.
On April 7, an early-morning rockslide sent boulders as big as cars onto Kamehameha Highway. The road was closed immediately and later reopened to contra-flow traffic -- alternating the flow of traffic on one lane -- as state crews worked on cleaning up the area and building protective barriers.
Crews will finish a temporary protective fence and barrier this weekend, behind which they will proceed with long-term fixes, such as screwing in boulders and installing a permanent fence.
The emergency repair cost about $750,000, part of which paid for removal of 70 truckloads, or about 700 tons, of rocks from the site. The rocks were inspected for bones because burial caves are in the area, but no bones were found, Fukunaga said.
In upcoming work, crews might temporarily close lanes for staging equipment, but mostly work will not affect traffic, Fukunaga said. Permanent repairs should take about six months, but the cost is undetermined, he said.
Fukunaga credited the work crews for working around the clock to reopen the roadway.