Waikiki residents & regulars brace for APEC
By Brooks Baehr - bio | email
WAIKIKI (HawaiiNewsNow) – People who live in and around Waikiki and the Hawaii Convention Center are bracing for travel disruptions that are expected to result from road closures and detours which are part of APEC security.
"It's affecting me in a big way," said Adina Bambur, who lives in a high rise just blocks from the Convention Center. She commutes daily from Waikiki to downtown Honolulu where she works and attends college.
"I think I'm just going to bicycle or walk because my school is expecting my bus to take two hours to get to Honolulu. That's what they emailed us," Bambur told Hawaii News Now.
"Some people have to come in two hours earlier than they normally do. Others have to take the bus and find new bus routes. Yeah. I guess it's going to be crazy. We'll see," said Travis Lauano, who works at a Waikiki hotel.
"Usually I come down (to Waikiki) and go swimming daily, but I'm not going to do that," said Palolo resident Crissy Quebatay. "I don't want to get stuck in the traffic. I don't want to get stopped. I don't know if there's going to be parking," she added.
Some Waikiki businesses, particularly restaurants, welcome APEC. They are hoping to cash in. Other businesses say APEC is forcing them to shut down for the week.
"It's going to kill us basically," said Sandy Hoy, a manager at Mini Coupe Hawaii. "As a moped rental business, there's nowhere (for our customers) to go. They're going to be (security) sweeping every single car. They're saying (it will take) 25 minutes for just a couple feet (of forward progress) on the Ala Wai. So as a moped rental business, not going to be good," Hoy concluded.
The scooters at Mini Coupe Hawaii may be parked for a while, but Mini Coupe and the rest of Waikiki are hoping the headaches endured this week will pay off with more business in the future ... business generated by the exposure Hawaii gets from APEC.
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