by: Kristine Uyeno
WAIKIKI (KHNL) - A popular Waikiki spot is getting a long-awaited facelift.
The state's replenishment project at Kuhio Beach will begin Monday after two years of delays.
A barge will be placed about 2,000 feet offshore above a sand bank. Sand will be collected by suction dredging and will be pumped to shore in a pipe, then dried and distributed.
This project was supposed to start two years ago, but was postponed because of issues with permitting and equipment, and most recently, the Ala Wai sewage spill this past Spring.
"We did test the bacteria in the sand, we're comfortable and confident it's not going to pose a health risk to anybody," said Dolan Eversole, coastal geologist.
Experts also say this project shouldn't change the surf breaks. But it should affect beachgoers.
"For the tourists here in Waikiki it's a big benefit because it's more space to lie out and be more comfortable," said Joey Valentin, surfing instructor.
"There would be no business, we need the sand," said Pat Kim, surfing instructor.