Kalakaua work has OK to go all hours of day


POSTED: Monday, February 16, 2009

Question: I live in a building across from the Hard Rock Cafe and Hawai'i Convention Center. There is a lot of construction work on Kalakaua Avenue near the bridge. They've been working at night, and noise has been bothering people in our building and neighboring buildings at 1 and 3 a.m. I was awakened at 3 one morning by the sound of metal or some sort of machinery. I was told they don't have a 24-hour permit to be there and are supposedly utilizing the 24-hour construction permit that was given for construction work on Kapiolani Boulevard. I complained to the city, but I was switched to the Board of Water Supply. Can you find out what's going on and whether they are allowed to work around the clock?

Answer: To speed up the water/sewer main project, which started in 2006, work is allowed to go on late at night and early in the morning.

The work taking place on Kalakaua Avenue between Kapiolani Boulevard and the Ala Wai Canal Bridge is part of the Kapiolani Boulevard Water & Sewer System Improvements Project. It is a joint project of the Board of Water Supply and the City and County of Honolulu.

As we explained previously (see archives.starbulletin.com/ 2008/07/27/news/kokualine.html), the contractor is allowed to work 24 hours a day, seven days a week, to expedite completion of the project.

The state Department of Health has issued a noise variance permit to allow construction at night along the entire route of the project, including Kapiolani Boulevard, between Ward and Kalakaua avenues; Kalakaua Avenue, between Kapiolani Boulevard and the Ala Wai Canal Bridge; and along Atkinson Drive and Kamakee Street.

According to Project Manager Brian Lum, crews are working both day and night shifts. The day shift runs 7 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, while the night shift is from 7 p.m. to 5 a.m. Sunday through Thursday.

But the end—for the entire $32 million project—is just a couple of months away.

The work, which began in September 2006, is scheduled to be completed in April.

Still to be done: installing underground utilities along Kalakaua Avenue, between Kapiolani Boulevard and the bridge; installing permanent paving striping and markers along Kapiolani Boulevard, between Ward and Kalakaua avenues; and installing traffic loop detectors at intersections along Kapiolani Boulevard.

“;We understand that the work related to this project is an extreme inconvenience to area residents, businesses and motorists who live and travel along the project route each day,”; Lum said. “;However, this project is extremely necessary to ensure the health and safety of our community.”;

The new water mains are designed for an 80-year service life, while the rehabilitated sewer system will last 50 to 75 years, he said.

“;We ask that the public bear with us as the project continues,”; Lum said. “;The benefit to the community upon its completion will be significant, especially for those in the immediate area who will be provided with a sound and reliable water and sewer system.”;

For more information, including updates on the project, go to http://www.kapiolaniwatersewer.org.