LANIAKEA, OAHU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The North Shore Chamber of Commerce is urging businesses to share their thoughts about the Laniakea parking situation with state Department of Transportation officials, according to a letter sent last week to chamber membership by its executive director.
Ed Korybski told members that HDOT was taking input from the public on various proposals for how to address the traffic flow problems at the popular so-called "Turtle Beach." This is where visitor and local traffic traditionally park on the mauka side of Kamehameha Highway and cross the roadway to the beach to admire the green sea turtles that frequent the site for food.
Last August, the state was ordered by a judge in a lawsuit to remove temporary jersey barriers installed to keep people from parking on the mauka side and illegally jaywalking and clogging up traffic. Since then, HDOT is moving forward to work with the public and the city on ways to address the ongoing controversial issue.
The long-term solution continues to be the realignment of Kamehameha Highway mauka, a project that would take up to five years to complete and require more public input and a long-term environmental assessment, DOT officials said.
In the meantime, the chamber president said the HDOT wants input on following options:
- No Build. This alternative would install "No Parking" signs along the area mauka of the right-of-way (ROW) directly across from Laniakea Beach.
- Mauka barriers with no parking. This alternative would result in the installation of jersey barriers that would prohibit vehicles from parking mauka of the ROW directly across from Laniakea Beach.
- Mauka barriers with parking area. This alternative would result in the installation of jersey barriers, but would create a makeshift parking area and allow parking behind the barriers through right-turn in/right-turn out movements from and onto Kamehameha Highway directly across from Laniakea Beach. This is the only alternative that would require work outside of HDOT's existing ROW.
- Mauka barriers with parallel parking. This alternative would result in the installation of jersey barriers, but would allow parallel parking adjacent to the edge of the ROW directly across from Laniakea Beach.
According to the chamber letter, the state DOT welcomes "any comments and input you may have on possible alternative for consideration." Korybski urged members to provide a written response within 30 days of receiving this letter. Responses or comments are being directed to Robert Sun via email at Robert.Sun@hawaii.gov, phone call at (808) 692-7578 or mail to
Hawaii Department of Transportation
Design Branch, Design Section, Highways Division
601 Kamokila Boulevard, Room 609
Kapolei, Hawaii 96707
At last check, the HDOT was moving forward with the process to acquire a Special Management Area permit from the City and County to address any future use of barriers and parking improvements necessary to the grounds.