North Shore highway gets fixes before high-surf season

  • Photo courtesy state Department of Transportation

    A state Department of Transportation contractor does work to prevent erosion damage to Kuhio Highway at Waipa in advance of anticipated high winter surf.

  • Contributed photo

    This photo shows the pre-emergency work being done by the state Department of Transportation along Kuhio Highway in Waipa.

  • Contributed photo

    This photo shows the pre-emergency work being done by the state Department of Transportation along Kuhio Highway in Waipa.

WAIPA — Instead of snow, November brought layers of a concrete-type substance to the roadside on Kauai’s North Shore as the state Department of Transportation prepared for anticipated high winter surf along Kuhio Highway in Waipa.

Work began on Nov. 17 and will continue through early this week, according to DOT spokesman Tim Sakahara. The goal is to prevent erosion and damage through the winter.

“The rocks are designed to reduce the impact from the wave action. The concrete in between the rocks is designed to prevent the soil and finer sediment from being pulled into the ocean during high-surf events, and is a preventative measure to help protect the roadway for the public,” Sakahara said.

The concrete and rocks will remain in place until additional repairs are necessary or a future shoreline protection project is funded, designed and constructed in this area, Sakahara said. These kinds of emergency repairs are uncommon, he said.

“The only other emergency shoreline protection repair conducted on Kauai in the last several years was in Kekaha in 2012 when a continuous concrete pile wall was constructed along the shoulder of Kaumualii Highway,” Sakahara said.

  1. billyjoebob December 3, 2017 2:00 am Reply

    The guy with the surf shorts and hard hat is going to save the shoreline from the winter storms, got it.

  2. Anthony J. Sutton December 3, 2017 11:45 am Reply

    The first stone wall to protect the highway went in west of t his new one. There is no no beach there. Farther up the beach from there, Waikoko Beach has been destroyed by the wall building for the original highway and later.

    The point is, these walls reflect energy and take sand away. After not too long, they need to be replaced, and meanwhile the beach is lost permanently. This beach used to be nice. It now floods at high tide. Shortly there will be no beach, mark my words.

    The whole west end of Hanalei Bay is eroding quickly because of surf and wind. Anyone who has a house there should be very concerned, because shoreline armoring as seawalls and such are called, now requires a very hard-to-get permit. Vs. previously. Just look at Lawa’i if you want to see what it does. Or Po’ipu Beach Park. Or the road to Barking Sands and the form Kekaha Beach, now a rock wall.

  3. Harold Siegwart December 6, 2017 2:13 pm Reply

    Years of experience in doing shoreline restoration. And these guys pour concrete between rocks news flash this is not how you do it friend . If you want learn just get on your computer and look it up . Federal government has guidelines on how to do it right .

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