HART to ease off lane closures over the holidays - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

HART to ease off lane closures over the holidays

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) -

It's a holiday reprieve. HART and the State are easing off the highway lane closures over the next few weeks much to the delight of business owners. Some businesses along the rail route have complained that rail construction has taken 50 to 75 percent of their business away. Hart was listening.

Traffic can get people out of the holiday mood faster than any Grinch, especially if it keeps customers from struggling businesses.

"We did hear from the businesses that construction has been impacting them. Their concern or request was if we could keep the roads open for the rest of the holiday season so the customers could come that would be great," said Scott Ishikawa, Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation (HART).

Starting Monday through January 4th there won't be any daytime lane closures along Kamehameha Highway in Pearl City and Aiea. And the nighttime lane closures won't start until 10:00 pm. Then starting the week of Christmas there won't be any overnight closures as well.

The State Department of Transportation is also giving a holiday traffic gift. There won't be any lane closures from now until December 26 on state highways, with the exception of Kamehameha Highway in the Kipapa Gulch area.

"That puts a smile on my face because Christmas time I think is every retailers best seasonal period. The more free flowing traffic I can get on Kamehameha Highway the better," said Ryan Lung, Mobile Car Audio Owner.

Two months ago when we spoke with Ryan Lung of Mobile Car Audio business was anything but booming. His entrance was blocked off and traffic was terrible.

"I travel on Kamehameha Highway to and from work. It's very bad. I'm not just talking about this McGrew part of the highway I'm talking all the way from Sam's Club to here. All of Kam highway is backed up," said Lung.

Now his entrance has been reopened. Business isn't exactly rocking but it's better than before.

"Kiewit has been very very responsive. Maybe not as much as I want but definitely responsive and proactive in trying to address our concerns," said Lung.

"I think people are already stressed as it is with last minute shopping so I think getting off the road will alleviate some of that stress," said Ishikawa.

Less stress and traffic would be music to many ears.

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