North Shore highway could reopen early next year

LIHUE — Two more convoys have been added on Kuhio Highway for access between Waikoko and Wainiha for the New Year’s holiday, and the state Department of Transportation says repairs to the severely damaged road are on schedule.

A 12:30 a.m. convoy from Wainiha to Waikoko and a 1 a.m. convoy from Waikoko to Wainiha will be added Jan. 1.

Thursday, HDOT spokesman Tim Sakahara said “everything is going as planned” on the repairs to Kuhio Highway, where April landslides and flooding destroyed much of the road.

“There’s been a lot of progress and work being done,” he said. “Our target is still to open the highway without a convoy early next year. We’re working hard toward that and we’re getting closer.”

Even when the road reopens without the convoy, Sakahara said there will be planned delays as crews finish up work on the three bridges in need of repair — the Waikoko, Waipa, and Waioli bridges, also known as the 3W bridges.

That project is set to conclude in the spring.

DOT reminds people that the convoy is available to Wainiha and Haena residents only, as well as construction workers and volunteers who have been pre-cleared.

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