State Tree Removal Project on Hold

Bob Loy
Bob Loy
Brennon Morioka
Brennon Morioka

MILILANI (KHNL) - A state project in Central Oahu has been put on hold, after concerns from The Outdoor Circle.

The Oahu-based environmental group is worried the Department of Transportation may be cutting down more trees along the H-2 Freeway, than it needs to.

Monday, workers continued cutting down branches from low-hanging trees near Mililani. They finished up any work they began last week. But that's all they'll be doing for now.

"It's our job to make sure that the DOT doesn't overdo it," said Bob Loy with The Outdoor Circle.

After talking to the group, transportation officials agreed to stop this project in Central Oahu until both sides can meet.

"We believe we have a very good plan and we think some of it is we didn't express all of the details of those plans to The Outdoor Circle," said Brennon Morioka, state highways deputy director.

Loy says his group has received more complaints and concerns over this project than any other in recent years.

"We've been up there and looked at the trees and we're concerned that some of the trees that are being removed or targeted for removal maybe so far away from the road that they don't really pose a hazard," said Loy.

"We noticed there were a few, large branches that had fallen onto the highway from some of the overhanging trees," said Morioka.

Since June, crews have cut down about 50 trees along the H2 in the northbound direction and plan to cut 25 more on the other side of the freeway.

But state officials say right now, there's no danger to drivers.

They hope to talk to The Outdoor Circle within the next few days to make sure everyone's on the same page.