If we were to build a road from around the Tree Tunnel to Kealia mauka of Kilohana Crater and Wailua and Kapaa with fingers down to Wailua and Kapaa, much of the traffic would be diverted away from major congestion. Especially if they were to put a finger from Lihue and run it mauka to this new road again taking a lot of the traffic away from the areas we all know are congested.
People wouldn’t have to drive through Lihue or Kapaa to get from one side of the island or the other, it would open up access for years to come. Businesses could route their drivers to handle a broader area since they wouldn’t have to backtrack through congested areas.
In addition to that this road, built to modern standards, would be safer and could be built bicycle friendly so that people could ride the island safely. Many people love to ride their bikes but won’t for fear of our roads, but you see more and more people riding in Lihue or with bikes on their cars heading to the bike paths. A road like this could potentially open up the island to more sporting events and people travel the world to areas they can bicycle.
If this road were built instead of working on existing highways, people would not have to be stuck in traffic jams that will undoubtedly occur with construction, and in the event of an emergency or accident the people of Kauai would have alternative routing available to them.
Businesses would be more productive and more business possibilities would be opened, the quality of people’s lives not stuck in traffic would be enhanced, what’s the downside? It would cost a lot of money but guess what? If it were built 40 years ago when it had financing in place it would have been significantly cheaper and it’s not going to be any cheaper tomorrow.
If people in government say there is no money, perhaps it’s because they haven’t researched it or perhaps they’re not up to negotiating on our behalf? Instead of any productivity we are listening to the same discussions that were taking place 10, 20 and even 30 years ago. Guess what? Other places have gotten things done. Why can’t the people here?
In the late 1980s, Sue Dixon wrote an article titled, “Why does everything have to be so difficult?” with observations as applicable today as they were when she wrote it.
If they can’t get the job done why vote for them again? If in five years the person you elect is still talking about the same nonsense it’s obvious they’re not up to the job.
Eric Toulon is a resident of Kalaheo.