Contraflow & Other Traffic Updates

On 09/12/16, the Department of Transportation (DOT) shared some good news for eastbound afternoon drivers at the Ahupua`a o Nanakuli Homestead meeting. The eastbound contraflow lane closure is temporary and will most likely end in late 2017. By that time, a 1.2 mile continuous 5th lane should be complete in Nanakuli, which will serve as a turning lane in the morning. My hope is to secure funding to turn the 5th lane into a contraflow lane in the afternoon. This will hopefully help to alleviate both eastbound and westbound traffic during peak hours.
Some other traffic solutions that DOT is working on include: 

– Feasibility study to extend the 5th lane to Hakimo Road

– $12m to resurface Farrington Highway along the entire stretch of the Waianae Coast

– Traffic cameras at the Nanakuli Ave. and Haleakala Ave. stoplights, which will allow DOT to remotely control these lights, as well as allow drivers to view these intersections online

– High-tech infrared sensors at key intersections in Nanakuli

– Makakilo interchange improvement project

– LED lighting along Farrington Hwy

– Zipper Lane: added lane and extended hours

– Kualaka`i to Kunia shoulder lane

– Tow truck service on Farrington Hwy

Contact me with your concerns at 586-7793. 

Sen. Shimabukuro explained that one more permanent potential solution is to turn the fifth turning lane into a contraflow lane. This would make it three lanes westbound and two eastbound in the afternoon.
 DOT Highways Division Deputy Director Edwin Sniffen addressed the community on 09/12/16.
For more information, contact:

Senator Maile Shimabukuro 
District 21 

(Kalaeloa, Honokai Hale, Ko Olina, Nanakuli, Ma`ili, Wai`anae, Makaha, Makua)  

State Capitol, Room 222

415 South Beretania Street

Honolulu, HI 96813 

808-586-7793 phone 

808-586-7797 facsimile

Facebook: Like Me

Twitter: @SenMaile 


Update Re: DOT “Road Usage Charges” Study


Here is my report from DOT’s “Road Usage Charges” (RUC) workshop. DOT is contemplating replacing the gas tax with RUC based on mileage traveled out of necessity since gas consumption is going down due to increased fuel-efficient vehicle usage and use of mass transit. Hawaii, like many other states and countries, is studying RUC as a method to sustain needed funding to maintain roadways. Hawaii received a grant to study RUC and there will be no added charges to taxpayers to conduct the study.  
The big takeaways for me were:

1) If you drive a car with average fuel-efficiency, RUC should cost the same as the gas tax;

2) If you drive a fuel-efficient vehicle, RUC should cost more than the gas tax; and 

3) If you drive a vehicle with low fuel-efficiency (eg, pick-up truck, mini-van, SUV, older car, etc), RUC should cost less than the gas tax.
The bottom line is that under the current gas tax system, people driving fuel-efficient cars are not paying their fair share, while those with non-fuel-efficient cars are paying more than their fair share. With RUC, someone driving an electric vehicle (who currently pays zero gas tax), will now pay the same rate as someone who drives a regular gas-powered vehicle. The RUC “levels the playing field” between those with the least fuel-efficient cars and those who can afford electric vehicles, hybrids, etc.
So hopefully in areas like the Waianae Coast, where pick-up trucks, SUVs, mini-vans, and older cars are popular, the majority of drivers would see a decrease in their overall transportation costs under an RUC system.
DOT is planning to post videos of presentations from the RUC workshop on their website. Check it out for further information. I will continue to keep you posted as I learn more.
For more information, see:
Pictured is DOT Highways Division Deputy Director Ed Sniffen speaking to attendees at DOT’s RUC Workshop, which took place from Oct. 3-5 in Honolulu.