HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Rail construction is moving east, and with it comes expected traffic back-ups.
"What motorists will see as far as rail construction goes over the next three months is heavy work in the Aloha Stadium area between Honomanu Street and the Aloha Stadium station," Honolulu Authority for Rapid Transportation spokesman Bill Brennan said.
At ground level on Kamehameha Highway, labor on the rail's fixed guideway is concentrated between Kaahumanu and Kaonihi streets. Down near Honomanu Street, underground utility lines are being relocated.
"That's where motorists will see the biggest impacts from rail construction," he said.
So far, nine-and-a-half miles of guideway have been built and five-and-a-half miles of track have been installed.
The good news in the near future: Brennan said there is some temporary relief on the way for drivers.
"I think people can look forward to less roadway congestion and construction as we approach the holidays," he said.
Also, crews are restoring the light at Waimano Home Road that allows drivers to turn right onto Kamehameha Highway from the right lane. The rail project had it stopped for 18 months.
That's a big win, says City Councilman Brandon Elefante.
"There was a lot of people or vehicles that would get into the intersection and would not allow for cars to get through," he said.
Brennan thinks guideway work in the Pearl City-Aiea corridor will be completed by this time next year.
"Kamehameha Highway is a pretty straight stretch of Highway and that work moves pretty steadily," he said.
The final phase of work in that stretch will be restoring the surface of the highway before HART turns it over to the state.